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What treatments work best for different kinds of constipation?
The various types of constipation can be due to irregular or strained defecation, hard or soft stools, failure to void the bowels, incomplete excrement and so on. Here we discuss effective treatments for different types of constipations: • Severe Constipation: Intermittent bowel movements lasting for a long time is generally termed as chronic constipation. However, acute constipation, though short-term, can take a serious toll on your health. Here are some effective tips and remedies to help you deal with severe constipation. Fiber bulks up the stool prompting its easy passage. You can have fiber supplements like Psyllium, methylcellulose, etc. Increasing fluid intake, milk of magnesia, regular exercise and taking OTC laxatives are other ways to resolve the symptoms of constipation. You should also maintain a predictable bowel movement schedule, spare enough time for defecation and manage your daily stress well in order to promote healthy defecations. However, if your bowel troubles persist, you can turn to prescription medications that include lubricants, stool softeners, osmotic laxatives, stimulants, saline purgatives, chloride channel activators, 5-HT-4 agonists, among others. • Pediatric Constipation: If your baby is struggling to defecate regularly or is passing dry, hard pellets, he/she may be constipated. Feed high-fiber foods like okra, bananas, apricots, pears, carrots, prunes, bran, whole wheat, multigrain and barley cereals, etc. Apple, prune or pear juice or water in 60-120 ml servings are good pediatric laxatives. ‘Bicycle Legs’ exercise or a gentle tummy massage are others options to look up to. A warm water bath can also help in getting the bowels going. • Atonic Constipation: Untoned or weak colon muscles can impede healthy defecation, called atonic constipation. Bowel retraining (strategies targeted towards establishing a routine, formulaic schedule for bowel movements), enemas and biofeedback (sensations are used to ease colon muscles) are the prescribed methods to rectify a lazy colon or colon stasis. • Bedridden Constipation: Water and fresh fruit juices will provide necessary fluids and bulk to your stools, precipitating a void. Additionally, exercise regularly to help with your daily discharge. Note that older adults are advised against fiber intake as that may end up in fecal loading in the rectum. Research suggests osmotic laxatives – those with polyethylene glycol or lactulose – to be one of the most effective remedies for constipation in the elderly.
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