Constipation is a common digestive complaint, which, if not treated soon, can cause a significant impact on your quality of life, both socially and psychologically. It can make you feel bloated, irritated, uncomfortable and can interfere with your ability to go about your daily tasks. When constipation is ongoing it is referred as chronic constipation.
What is chronic constipation?
The term refers to infrequent bowel movements and difficulty in passing of stools for a period that can range from three weeks to several months. The frequency of bowel movements varies from person to person. For some individuals, passing stools three times a week is normal, but for others, going every day is termed as normal. Everyone's body is different, so there is no perfect number to generalize bowel movements. However, if you pass stools less than three times a week for more than three months, it can be a symptom of chronic constipation. If you have symptoms such as hard lumpy stools, bloating, feeling incomplete evacuation, or abdominal discomfort that persists for several weeks or longer, it can be a sign of chronic constipation.
How to get relief from chronic constipation?
Healthy changes in your lifestyle and diet can greatly aid in bringing relief in constipation. This can help to improve the condition without requiring medication. The key for a better digestive process lies in the foods you eat and drinks you intake. Maintaining a healthy and well-balanced diet can significantly help in constipation relief.
Include fiber in your diet
If you want safe and long-term relief, eating fiber based products helps in relieving constipation- naturally. Try to avoid processed foods and starch and include more fiber-rich food in your daily diet to ease chronic constipation. Eat plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain rice, whole-wheat pasta and legumes such as beans and lentils. Soluble fiber helps absorbing nutrients from food while insoluble fiber adds bulk to your stool making the passing of stool much easier.
One of the key risk factors for chronic constipation is inactivity. Regular exercises like a daily walk or a quick run will stimulate the natural contractions of your bowels and will help your stools move out quickly. Exercise can speed things up and decreases the time it takes food to move through the large intestine. Try to regularize your exercise regimen to get constipation relief. However, avoid indulging in heavy exercises right after eating a meal, as it can prove to be unhealthy.
Drinking plenty of water is the simplest way to get relief from constipation. Water facilitates healthy digestion and the flow of food through the intestines by lubricating the intestines and food we eat. Adding fluids helps keep the stool soft and painless to pass. Although, drinking water is the best source of hydration, you can also include fluids like herbal tea, natural fruit juices, and clear soups to keep constipation at bay.
Use the bathroom promptly
Always respond immediately to the call of nature. Showing laziness to pass stools can increase your chances of intensifying this disorder. Work out a daily routine when you are easily able to spend ample time in the toilet. According to recent health studies, ignoring your body signals is a common cause for constipation.
Indulge in stress relief activities like yoga or meditation, get enough sleep and decrease the amount of caffeinated beverages like tea, coffee or soda to curb chronic constipation.
However, if all the above remedies fail to cure, consult an expert health care practitioner immediately.