Are you constipated? Here’s how to tell

Are you constipated? Here’s how to tell

Nearly everyone becomes constipated at one time or another. But how do you know when you are constipated?

According to the National Institute on Aging, the following are a few questions you may want to ask yourself:

  • Do you often have fewer than three bowel movements a week?
  • Do you usually have a difficult time passing stools?
  • Are stools often lumpy or hard?
  • Do you have a feeling of being blocked or of not having fully emptied your bowels?

If you answered “yes” to one or more of these questions, you may have a constipation problem and want to discuss with your physician.

Dr. Henry Govekar, colorectal surgeon at Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, Ill., recommends “incorporating fruits, vegetables and high-fiber foods in your daily diet, while limiting processed foods and red meat. I also encourage drinking enough water and considering a fiber supplement to stay regular.”

“You may want to also talk to your primary care provider about medications that have constipation as a side effect,” Dr. Govekar adds.

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6 Comments

  1. Suzanne Weber May 5, 2017 at 11:49 am · Reply

    You may also have Pelvic Floor Dysfunction which can prevent complete elimination of stool due to high resting pressures in the muscles that make up the pelvic floor. This can happen as the result of childbirth, surgery in the pelvic floor and excessive straining, PVD is treatable by specially trained physician therapists. It can usually be diagnosed by GI/Motility physicians and with specialized testing to measure anal/rectal resting pressures.
    Advocate BroMenn Medical Center is fortunate to have a physical therapist that is qualified to treat this disorder locate at their new building (ABOC) on route 9 in Bloomington.

  2. I have a problem. I am frustrated along with constipated. In my heart diet/meds, my diabetic diet/meds and my low salt diet I am in great conflict..

    My one doctor wants me to take a pill with a diuretic, another doctor wants me to take a fiber additive, and my other doctor wants me to drink 8 glasses of water per day. My results are; I take the pills, drink the water, eat the fiber and then pee every half hour, dry out the fiber, and end up constipated.

  3. THE ARTICLE/DOCTOR DID NOT ADDRESS THOSE EFFECTS CAUSED BY CERTAIN MEDICATIONS. I DO ALL OF THE THINGS HE SUGGESTED BUT STILL HAVE SOME PROBLEMS.

  4. 1TSP of flaxseed in your oatmeal every morning. Easy Peasy!

  5. 2-3 prunes with a glass of water, greens a few nuts opens up an entirely new world

  6. ACTIVIA. Pro biotic daily

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About the Author

Lisa O'Neil
Lisa O'Neil

Lisa O’Neil, health enews contributor, serves as Director of Public Affairs-Central Region for Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital, Advocate BroMenn Medical Center and Advocate Eureka Hospital. She enjoys spending time with her husband, three children and mini-golden doodle. In her spare time, you will most likely find her on the tennis court or on the back of her husband’s Harley, cruising the many scenic routes around the northwest suburbs.

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