If a woman chooses to have children, pregnancy can represent one of the most beautiful times in her life. But along with the wonders and excitement of creating a life come uncomfortable side effects such as constipation. While the symptoms and prevention tactics of pregnant constipation sufferers typically align with general constipation sufferers, the causes of constipation during pregnancy can be different.
Pregnant women should consult a doctor before making any lifestyle or medical changes.
What causes constipation during pregnancy?
General constipation causes such as minimal exercise and a low-fiber diet contribute to constipation during pregnancy. Additionally, an increase of hormones that relax the intestinal muscle during pregnancy can contribute to constipation.
How to relieve constipation during pregnancy:
Pregnant women should consult a doctor before taking any type of laxative product. Lifestyle changes such as more exercise and an increased intake of fiber and fluids can help relieve uncomfortable symptoms.
About Occasional Constipation
If you have questions about constipation, you’re not alone. Constipation affects an estimated 63 million people in North America, making constipation one of the most common gastrointestinal complaints.1
Some possible symptoms of constipation may include2-4:
- Infrequent bowel movements
- Irregular bowel movements
- Incomplete bowel movements
- Pain or straining during bowel movements
- Hard, dry stools
- Excessive bloating
If your need for a laxative lasts for more than one week, you should see your doctor to make sure it’s not a sign of a more serious condition.
- Higgens et al; Am J Gastro 2004 Apr, 99(4) 750-9
- National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC). Definition & Facts for Constipation. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/constipation/definition-facts Accessed July 2017.
- American Gastroenterological Association. Constipation. Available at http://www.gastro.org/patient-care/conditions-diseases/constipation. Accessed August 2017.
- American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons. Constipation. Available at https://www.fascrs.org/patients/disease-condition/constipation-0. Accessed August 2017.