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Constipation: it's causes, symptoms and treatment.



Overview:
Constipation is a condition of the digestive system where the individual has solid stools that are difficult to expel in most cases,
and this happens because the colon has absorbed a lot of water from the food inside it.

Causes:
Constipation occurs when the colon absorbs a lot of water, which can occur if the colon muscles contract slowly or badly, causing the stool to move very slowly and lose more water.
These are the most common causes of constipation:
1) Lack of fiber in diet:
People whose diets include a good quantity of fiber are significantly less likely to suffer from constipation.
It is important to consume foods high in fiber such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Fiber promotes bowel movement and prevents constipation.
Foods that are low in fiber include high-fat foods, such as cheese, meat, and eggs.
2) Physical inactivity:
Constipation can occur if a person becomes physically inactive. This occurs especially in the elderly.
3) Some drugs:
The most common medications to cause constipation are:
- Narcotic (opioid) pain drugs including codeine (Tylenol), oxycodone (Percocet), and hydromorphone (Diluted).
- Antidepressants including amitriptyline (Elavil) and imipramine (Tofranil).
- Anticonvulsants including phenytoin (Dilantin) and carbamazepine (Tegretol) iron supplements.
- Calcium channel blocking drugs including diltiazem (Cardizem) and nifedipine (Procardia).
- Aluminum-containing antacids including Amphojel and Basaljel.
- Diuretics including chlorothiazide (Diuril).
4) Milk:
Some people become constipated when they consume milk and dairy products.
People with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) get constipation much more frequently, compared to the rest of the population.
6) Pregnancy:
Pregnancy brings about hormonal changes that can make a woman more prone to constipation. Also, the uterus may compress the intestine, slowing down the passage of food.
7) Aging:
As we age, our metabolism slows down, resulting in less intestinal activity. The muscles in the digestive system do not work as well as they are used to.
8) Overuse of laxatives:
Laxatives are effective. They help bowel movements. However, their use regularly allows the body to get used to their work and gradually the dose needs to be increased to get the same effect. Laxatives can be a habit of forming. When we rely on it, there is a great risk of constipation when it is stopped.
9) Not going to the toilet when needed:
If individuals ignore the desire to get bowel movement, the desire can gradually go away until the individual no longer feels the need to go and the longer you are so delayed, the drier and harder the stool will become.
10) Not drinking enough water (dehydration):
If constipation already exists, drinking more fluids cannot alleviate it. Although, drinking much of water regularly reduces the risk of constipation.
Many soft drinks and drinks contain caffeine that can cause dehydration and aggravate constipation. Alcohol also dehydrates the body and must be avoided by individuals who are constipation or very susceptible to constipation.
11) Problems with the colon or rectum
Tumors can compress or restrict the passages and cause constipation.
Other problems may cause constipation such as diverticulosis, adhesions (scar tissue), and abnormal narrowing of the colon or rectum.
Hirschsprung disease: People who have this disease are liable to constipation. Hirschsprung disease is a genetic defect in which some nerve cells are absent in the large intestine.

 Treatment:
Treatment of recurrent constipation may include changes in lifestyle, such as exercising more, eating more fiber, and drinking more water.
Usually, laxatives will cure most constipation cases successfully - but should be used with care and only when necessary. In the most difficult cases, a person may need a prescription medication.
It is important to understand the cause of constipation - there may be a disease or latent condition. Some people with recurrent constipation use diary notes to record bowel movements, stool characteristics, and other factors that may help both the doctor and patient to create the best treatment.
Some gastrointestinal doctors say there are people who do not devote enough time to defecate. Dedicate enough time to allow your toilet to be uninterrupted and uninterrupted, and do not ignore the desire to get bowel movement.
OTC laxatives
Only use these laxatives as a last resort:
- Stimulants - they make the muscles in the intestines contract rhythmically. These include Correctol, Dulcolax, and Senokot.
- Lubricants - they help the stool move down the colon more easily. These include mineral oil and Fleet.
- Stool softeners - they rehydrate (moisten) the stool. These include Colace and Surfak.
- Fiber supplements - these are perhaps the safest laxatives. They are also called bulk laxatives. They include FiberCon, Metamucil, Konsyl, Serutan, and Citrucel and should be taken with plenty of water.
- Osmotics - they facilitate the movement of fluids through the colon. These include Cephulac, Sorbitol, and Miralax.
- Saline laxatives - these draw water into the colon. These include milk of magnesia.
- Chloride channel activators - these require a prescription and include lubiprostone (Amitiza).
- 5-HT-4 agonists They increase fluid secretion in the intestines and accelerate the rate of food passing through the colon. They include Procalloprid.
In the case of the treatment doesn’t affect , we have to do surgery to remove part of the colon. In this surgery , the segment which is responsible for disease form the anal sphincter or rectum are removed.

Constipation: it's causes, symptoms and treatment. Reviewed by Tpdsm on September 28, 2017 Rating: 5

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