Constipation is a subject that varies from individual to individual based on his/her own history. A bowel movement pattern in a normal, healthy individual is typically 1-2 bowel movements per day. However, if a patient normally is on schedule every 3 days, for example, then this is considered normal for that individual case. Common symptoms of constipation include difficulty or straining, a sensation of fullness in the lower abdomen and low back pain in neutral or bearing down positions.
Common causative factors include certain prescription medications such as Vicodin, anticholinergics, anticonvulsants, antidepressants, antiparkinsonians, calcium channel blockers and tranquilizers, over-the-counter drugs such as iron, NSAIDS, and even some laxatives, decreased intake of pure water and fiber, pregnancy, hypothyroidism, diabetes, sedentary lifestyle and blockage.
At the Chiropractic office, it is important to discuss the importance of bowel habit education, which includes proper fiber and fluid intake, awareness of medicinal side effects, especially laxative abuse, and lifestyle habits. Further discussion and workup will depend entirely on each individual’s circumstance.
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