What Is Constipation? Symptoms & Silly Mistakes You Might Be Making

What Is Constipation?

When I was a kid, I was really constipated. Going number 2 was a weekend event, a family excursion. The kind of outing you packed a picnic for. I would spend entire evenings sitting on the toilet, sipping on a cup of disgusting black coffee, while my helpful family crowded outside the bathroom door shouting words of encouragement like "Just Relax!" and "Take Your Time!"

And my personal favourite: "Hurry up, I need the bathroom!"

Key Takeaway

Don't stay constipated. As you get older, it can get really bad.... laxatives stop working, and Drs run out of ideas. NOW is the time to do something about it.

At the time I thought it was just me, but now I know I'm not alone. Over 20% of the US adult population suffer from constipation regularly.

If you're having no luck in the toilet department, read on.

I'm going to go into detail about what constipation is and the different things that may be causing your constipation. I'll even give you some ridiculously simple, natural strategies you can try.

And they DON'T include taking a laxative.

The Constipation Symptoms We Learn To Ignore

Most people don't actually realise they're constipated. Going once every 2-3 days has been normal for them their whole lives.

I know because I’ve been there.

Even when you go to the Dr about it, they often say that’s ok for you, that’s “your normal”.

But it's not ok. You're supposed to go to the bathroom at least once a day.

If you don't, it can affect everything from your mood, to your skin, to what clothes you wear. Not to mention it's really not good for your bowels to keep all that crap building up.

What Is Constipation, According to the Experts?

Actually the Mayo Clinic agrees that you need regular number 2's.

Having more than one of these symptoms for more than 3 months puts you into the “Chronic Constipation” category, where they suggest you should see your Dr for help.

Of course going to the doctor is great, but it doesn’t get you off the hook - you still need to do your part too!

You are the person most invested in being healthy, and you're also the only person who really knows what makes your body feel good or bad.

The best way to do this is to start noticing your body's signs. The symptoms that are trying to tell you something. 

Symptoms of Constipation According to the Mayo Clinic 

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    Going number 2 less than 3 times a week
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    Poop that’s lumpy or hard
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    Straining when you do go
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    The feeling that something’s stuck in there and that’s why you can’t poo
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    Never feeling like you’ve properly emptied your bowels
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    Needing to help yourself by pressing with your hand

NOW do you think you’re constipated?

Dr. Norman Walker

“If the sewer system in your home is backed up, your entire home is aff​ected. Should it be any different with your body?”


Why Laxatives Are Not Your Friend

I know that a strong cup of coffee or a laxative can help move things along, but that’s only temporary.

Don’t kid yourself, laxatives are habit forming and can make things worse in the long run. They tire your bowel out and weaken the muscles over time. It's really important to figure out what the root cause of your constipation is.

On-and-off constipation can become a serious chronic problem as you get older, and letting the problem persist without working on it can affect your future quality of life, your health and your mental state.²

You think you’re hiding from the world now, but imagine how you’re going to feel 10 years down the line if you haven’t managed to clear all that junk out of your basement?

... Actually don’t.

It’s time to stand up to constipation and stop letting it run your life.

Up next - The Unacceptable Number 1 Reason For Constipation



References

²Impact of Persistent Constipation on Health Related Quality of Life and Mortality in Older Community Dwelling Women – Koloski et al – Gastro Journal

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