Constipation is a condition that is not pleasant to talk about but one which many people suffer from at one point or another. Although this common ailment may be embarrassing for some, you should be aware of when to seek our professional assessment. Whether you are worried about the symptoms of constipation or have started noticing a few changes in your bowel movements, you need to read on to know when you should visit a doctor.
What is Constipation?
Constipation is when bowel movements occur less frequently than normal or are difficult to pass. It is often caused by hard, dry stool that may accompany cramping, straining, and a sensation of incomplete evacuation.
What Causes Constipation?
Several factors that cause constipation include:
Staying well-hydrated is key to regularity. When dehydrated, it’s harder for your body to push out waste and for food to pass through your intestines.
Lack of fiber in your body is a common cause of constipation. Fiber helps keep you regular by adding bulk to your stool and helping it move through your colon without effort. If you don’t get enough fiber in your diet, you risk developing constipation issues.
Medications are another common culprit for constipation. Medications that may slow down bowel movements include diuretics and antidepressants.
Constipation is a pregnancy symptom, especially during the second and third trimesters. As your baby grows, the pressure on your lower abdomen increases. A full bladder also puts pressure on your bowels, causing constipation.
When Should Constipation Be a Concern?
Constipation Persisting After A Change in Your Lifestyle
In most cases, constipation can be treated at home with lifestyle changes and medications. But if your symptoms are severe or don’t go away, you may have a more serious underlying condition that requires medical care.
Severe Stomach Aches and Blood in Your Stool
Constipation can cause pain and bleeding from hemorrhoids. With severe constipation, the rectum may become so swollen that it bleeds. If you have blood in your stool and severe stomach pain, you should talk to your doctor about the possibility of hemorrhoids or anal fissures.
The weight loss could be due to a lack of nutrients in your body and could lead to dehydration or malnutrition.
Vomiting and Bloating
If you are constipated and start vomiting or feel bloated, this could signify something more serious. It could mean that an obstruction in your intestines prevents food from being digested properly. That’s why it’s important to seek a doctor’s advice.
Intense or Constant Abdominal Pain
If you experience severe abdominal pain along with constipation, it could be an indicator of a serious condition like appendicitis or diverticulitis.
Request an Appointment for Constipation Treatment
The best thing to do is be aware of the various causes and signs of constipation. Remember to take good care of your body, educate yourself about what’s happening, and visit a doctor when in doubt.
If you are regularly constipated or your condition worsens, schedule a consultation with Arizona Colorectal Experts in Chander, Arizona, at 602-844-5157.