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What Can Be Done About My Severe Constipation?

What Can Be Done About My Severe Constipation?

For how long have you been constipated? Constipation is usually defined as passing fewer than three stools per week. However, the frequency isn’t the only indicator of constipation. 

In addition to infrequent bowel movements, hard stools, bleeding from the rectum, and straining during bowel movements are other signs of constipation. 

If you are worried about constipation, we’re here to help. We asked our experts at Digestive Disease Consultants of Orange County to share with you some of the ways you can treat constipation at home and when it is time to give us a call. 

What causes your constipation?

Constipation can occur due to food intolerances, stress, and even dehydration. But beyond the harmless causes of constipation, there is also the possibility that an underlying illness is causing your constipation. 

Conditions that are linked to constipation include:

Rarer causes of constipation include colorectal cancer and intestinal obstruction. 

Supplements and medications can also cause constipation. If you take any, check your medicine cabinet for the following:

Speak to your provider about the medications you’re taking as there may be some alternatives that are more gut-friendly. 

How is severe constipation treated? 

Your first impulse might be to add some fiber to your plate, but if you are severely constipated, adding more fiber may make you feel even more bloated and constipated. Instead, drink more water. Some people may even feel some relief after adding caffeine or prune juice. 

If your constipation doesn’t go away after drinking plenty of liquids, you may benefit from medical help. 

For severe constipation, certain laxatives can be used for temporary relief. If laxatives fail to work as well, our providers can treat your constipation with the help of an enema. An enema is a treatment used when your rectum is blocked with stool and it involves pushing some fluid into your rectum to help loosen the stools. 

When to ask for help for your constipation 

Constipation is often harmless, but can become dangerous when accompanied by the following symptoms:

If your constipation is followed by any of the symptoms above, give us a call right away, as it could be an indication of a more serious condition. 

However, constipation doesn’t always have to be linked to a serious condition. If your constipation persists for more than three weeks at a time or is severe enough to cause you pain and nausea, you can also benefit by contacting us to schedule an appointment

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