<p><strong>What Is Constipation? </strong></p>
<p>Constipation is more a complaint than a disorder—in fact, it is the most common gastrointestinal complaint in the United States. Constipation is characterized by infrequent bowel movements with stools that are often hard and sometimes painful to pass. The condition results when intestinal contractions slow down, allowing more time for the bowels to remove water from food wastes.</p>
<p>The normal frequency of bowel movements varies greatly from person to person—it is perfectly normal for some people to have three bowel movements a day, while others have as few as three a week. Constipation involves the passage of hard stools less than three times in a week, usually accompanied by bloating and discomfort. Any change in a person’s usual frequency of bowel movements, however, may be a sign of a more serious underlying disorder.</p>
The foods you eat may cause, worsen, or relieve constipation .
Normal poop (stool) patterns are different for everyone. Some people may have a bowel movement more than once a day while others may have one every 2 to 3 days. Normal stools should not be painful or difficult to pass.
Constipation is defined as bowel movements that are infrequent, hard or difficult to pass. Constipation may be a chronic (long-term) problem or occur occasionally. It may result from medications, a medical condition, not enough activity, or a diet too low in fiber or fluid.
Constipation is defined as infrequent bowel movements (usually fewer than three per week). Though many people experience occasional constipation, some people suffer from chronic constipation, which is usually associated with difficulty passing stools, hard or lumpy stools, or excessive straining to pass a bowel movement. While chronic constipation is a problem that is more likely to affect the elderly due to their poor nutritional habits, increased medications, and lack of activity, it is a condition that affects people across the lifespan. Here are some simple tips to treat (and prevent) constipation.
Drink More Water
Adequate hydration is crucial to preventing constipation, since water helps to move stool through your intestines. A good rule of thumb is to drink at least half of your body weight in fluid ounces each day. For example, a 150-pound person would need a minimum of 75 ounces of fluid each day. If you exercise or work outside in the heat, your fluid needs are ...
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