What are constipation causes?

Dream to get rid of constipation? What tips are the best? How to prevent constipation? What are constipation causes? You’ll find out everything you wanted to know about constipation here!

defecation process

Constipation is a violation of the defecation process, characterized by the absence of the evacuation for more than 48 hours or extremely inadequate bowel movement. Acts of constipation are a slowing of the typical, usual frequency of defecation, small portions of evacuation, feeling of severe incomplete bowel movements, permanent abdominal pain. Constipation causes the fast development of intestinal chronic colitis, dysbiosis, causing intoxication. Severe and also frequent straining during the act of defecation leads to the development of hemorrhoids, anal fissures, hernia. Frequent constipation adversely affects the condition of the skin and contributes to its aging.

The term ‘constipation’ means difficulty in bowel movements, bowel movements happen no more than every three days.

Causes of constipation

Causes of constipation

It is necessary to distinguish the situational (occasional) and chronic constipation. Situational constipation happens in a variety of provoking situations, when people, who are very prone to any difficulty defecating, pregnancy, journey ‘constipation tourist’: eating products that hinder the transit of intestinal mass, different insufficient fluid intake, emotional or psychological distress and stress. Also constipation might be caused by taking different drugs. Situational constipation occurs for a short time and, often, independently or by receiving laxatives is successfully resolved. Such different conditions are not considered as a medical disease.

Chronic constipation means a regular defecation delay for 48 hours or more, releasing a small amount of dense and dry feces. Often, after any bowel movement person is not feeling a complete emptying of their bowel. We can tell about the presence of constipation, when some patient has one, a couple or all of these symptoms. Besides that an important diagnostic feature is often the change in frequency and habitual nature of bowel movements.

Constipation common disorder

Constipation is a really common disorder among the population of digestion, tendency to constipation can also lead to serious proctologic diseases, so this problem has a very high degree of social significance. Due to its prevalence and severe deterioration affects the quality of life of patients, the chronic constipation is allocated as a separate syndrome, and the problems of constipation are currently actively studied by proctology, gastroenterology and others.

Most often little children and the elderly (over 60 years) suffer from constipation. Feeling bowel movement difficulty, the impossibility of relief, despite the stubborn straining, it is needed to apply extra stimulating to make the release of the rectum of feces, action (pressure on the perineum, anus side walls, vagina).

Constipation disorder

The constant condition of inadequate emptying of the ampoule of the rectum always leads to the development of the prolapse of the perineum syndrome.

Chronic constipation often can be diagnosed when evacuation frequency becomes less than 3 times a week, defecation is extremely difficult and requires huge effort, evacuation consistency is thick, lumpy, there is a feeling of uncomfortable incomplete emptying of the rectum of feces.

Causes of chronic constipation

Causes of chronic constipation

Popular cause of chronic constipation is a particular way of life, eating habits. Constipation contributes different regularly deterrence urge to defecate, eventually crush the reflex activity of the intestine (such as a busy work schedule, prolonged bed rest, frequent travel). Also frequent use of laxatives due to unreasonable expectations of evacuation (normal rhythm of bowel movements is perceived by the patient as (he thinks so) not enough), a diet is poor in products containing vegetable fiber, lack of daily fluid intake - factors that contribute to the development of chronic difficulty of emptying the bowel.

In addition, constipation is one of the best indication of irritable bowel syndrome. That pathological condition is disturbed bowel motility and evacuation instability may occur: constipation with evacuation of scanty solid allocation (sometimes with mucus) can alternate with diarrhea. Stress condition, in such cases, only worsens the patient's functional activity of the intestine.

 constipation pills

Constipation can be caused by a serious condition often requires surgical correction: mechanical intestinal obstruction, contributing to the development of coprostasis. Depending on the degree of narrowing of the intestinal lumen obstruction may be complete or partial. The causes of the obstruction of the intestinal lumen may be neoplastic processes, scarring, adhesions, worm infestation, diverticula colon volvulus.

Coprostasia is characterized by the prolonged absence of the evacuation, feeling the overflow in the intestine, arching abdominal pain. Sometimes liquid bowel contents can get fecal plug and ‘look’ like diarrhea.

toilet problems

The cause of constipation can be a psychological fear of defecation, developing as a result of different diseases of the rectum, accompanied by severe pain (anal fissure, abscess, acute hemorrhoids, ). Neurological disorders (depression, stress, nervous shock) might also contribute to the development of different chronic disorders of bowel movement.

Moreover, a lot of drugs may cause a side effect in the inhibition of intestinal motility and also  promote constipation. Pathology innervation of the intestinal wall (Hirschsprung's disease, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury and disease) also can cause chronic constipation.

Classification of constipation

Classification of constipation

Constipation is always classified by different etiological factors and also mechanisms of development: nutritional (diet-related features), neurogenic (always caused by some disorders of the neuro-reflex activity), also psychogenic (related to the serious psycho-emotional state), constipation with some anorectal diseases (hemorrhoids, anal fissure, paraproctitis) toxic (caused by poisoning or mercury, certain drugs, chronic intoxication) proctogenic (associated with functional disorders of the diaphragm muscles of the pelvic floor), constipation because of mechanical constraints (tumors, strictures, scarring, polyps, abnormalities of the digestive tract), iatrogenic constipation (as a result of taking medication).

Symptoms of chronic constipation

Symptoms of chronic constipation

Constipation may be accompanied by diverse symptoms, depending on the diseases they cause. In some cases, constipation is the only complaint of the patient.

Individual bowel movement rhythm can vary. Depending on the changes in the frequency of defecation habitual constipation might be considered emptying from once in 2-3 days and more often. Defecation in constipation is characterized by severe tensions, it requires considerable effort. Dense or dry poop may be shaped like dry pellets, in the form of, for example, beans, string.

Symptoms of constipation

 In some cases, there may be a so-called stop-diarrhea, when the background of long-term absence of normal bowel movement and a feeling of fullness in the abdomen causes diarrhea loose evacuations with mucus. The liquid feces that  contain mucus can be the finish of the existing long-term constipation as a result of serious irritation of the intestinal wall.

Very often constipation is accompanied with pain and heaviness in patient'd stomach, eases after a bowel movement and also release of intestinal gases. Flatulence is also often accompanied by difficulty of movement of intestinal mass. Increased flatulence is a consequence of the activity of microorganisms that inhabit the large intestine. Patients suffering from constipation may have decreased appetite, halitosis, belching air. As a rule, long-existing chronic constipation contributes to depressed mood, decreased performance, sleep disturbances, other neurotic disorders.

Complications of chronic constipation

Complications of chronic constipation

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Prolonged chronic constipation can contribute to the development of complications in the digestive tract. This may be an inflammatory bowel disease (colitis, proctosigmoiditis) rectoanal diseases (hemorrhoids, anal fissure, abscess), diverticular disease of the colon, increase (stretching in the width and length) of the large intestine - megacolon.

One of the most serious consequences of the long-existing constipation can be persistent bowel obstruction requiring emergency surgery. A long-term obstruction promotes ischemia of intestinal walls and can lead to necrotic.

long-existing constipation

In some cases, constipation can be a signal of having malignancy and also be a sign of some disease, prone to malignancy. Also nutritional constipation is associated with insufficient fiber in the diet, contributes to the formation of carcinogens in the intestine and the difficulty of passage of intestinal contents, allows carcinogens cause long irritating.

Elderly and people, who suffer from psychiatric disorders, may have as a result of forgetfulness and lack of control over the regularity of bowel movements fecal obstruction.

Diagnosis of chronic constipation

Diagnosis of chronic constipation

The first phase evaluates the clinical symptoms (complaints, medical history, and physical examination data) and radiographic picture, allowing assessing the condition of the large intestine: peristalsis, the width of the clearance of occurring tumor formation, stricture, wall tension, congenital anomalies, megacolon. When barium enema occurs the intestinal obstruction is clearly revealed.

The second stage of diagnostic measures is performed by means of a colonoscopy (endoscopic examination of the large intestine), sampling biopsies of mucous membranes and its histological examination and, cytology, if it is necessary.

Diagnosis of constipation

Then appointed research methods of functional bowel conditions depending on preliminary assumptions take place. It can be: bacteriological samples, coprogram, a study to identify hidden blood, methods of muscle manometry of the intestinal wall (sphincterometry), laboratory tests for detection of functional disorders of the secretory organs of the digestive tract, and others.

Appointment of certain needed diagnostic procedures, which are performed on the basis of complaints, revealed features of the intestine, speculation about possible co-morbidities and a choice of different tactics of treatment. As constipation causes treatment may be very different.

Treatment of chronic constipation

Treatment of chronic constipation

Treatment of chronic constipation is not limited with laxatives. A long-existing chronic constipation treatment is unacceptable, as it may be a symptom of serious illness or contribute to the development of dangerous complications. Especially if it is severe constipation while pregnant.

In addition, the self-treatment with laxatives without regard to their characteristics, mechanisms of action and potential side effects often leads to the formation of persistent problems with defecation by reducing intestinal motor function. Over time the dosage of laxatives is increased and these drugs become completely ineffective.

Treatment of constipation

Treatment of chronic constipation in addition to symptomatic treatment includes measures to detect and cure state, which was the cause of constipation.

Learning the mechanism of chronic constipation of the patient, the medical doctor will prescribe treatment, which is based on pathogenic factors, which contribute to more effective action of fast symptomatic treatment and does not cause a vicious circle, exacerbating intestinal motility disorders.

Recommendations for the treatment of functional constipation

treatment of constipation

Functional constipation can be caused by different reasons but always having pathological interfering functional characteristics in their digestive tract (in contrast to the constipation by different mechanical obstruction when often there is optimal surgical treatment) based on its pathogenesis.

In the treatment of constipation the diet plays a very important role. The diet of patients is required to have products rich in vegetable fiber (such as cereals, vegetables, fruits) and plenty of fluids (at least drink two liters per day). In that case, if the background diet increased flatulence and bloating develops, so doctor prescribes medication. In addition, the diet excludes all products contributing exacerbate constipation.

functional constipation

Meals must be carried out according to the regime, at least five times a day in small portions. Avoiding long breaks between meals. You should also choose the regularity of bowel movements closely. It is advisable to restore the feel and rhythm of individual natural bowel movement and avoid the urge restraint.

In the case of medication, contributing to the difficulty of transit of intestinal mass (narcotic analgesics, ganglioplegic, iron supplements, diuretics, oral contraceptives), you must discard them and, if possible, replace with drugs, which have no effect on the digestion.

treatment of serious constipation

As stimulation of the digestive tract and intestinal muscle tone strengthening it is recommended to use active lifestyle, walking, swimming, and aerobics. In addition, pro-active attitude has a fast positive effect on person's psycho-emotional status and promotes easy stress experience.

stomach heart

Laxatives are prescribed only in the case of persistent constipation, are not amenable to correction and diet regime. At the same time the drug is prescribe, taking into account the development of the mechanism of constipation. In the appointment of laxatives you should remember that prolonged intake of different irritating the intestinal wall treatments and increases peristalsis, is fraught for the fast development of ‘lazy bowel’ syndrome when, after discontinuation of the drug person's intestinal peristaltic activity falls to top minimum.

Preventing constipation

Preventing constipation

Preventing constipation is the timely detection and treatment of digestive pathologies and other diseases that can also contribute to constipation, proper diet, which is rich in organic fiber, needed amount of fluids, as well as an active lifestyle and adherence to meals and bowel movements.

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