ConstipationHow can I help ease my constipation symptoms?
When you experience small, infrequent or painful bowel movements, you are most likely suffering from constipation. More than half of all pregnant women will suffer from constipation at some time during their pregnancy. There are several causes of constipation and many things that you can do to prevent becoming constipated.
One of the major causes of constipation is an increase of progesterone during pregnancy. Progesterone is a hormone that slows the movement of food through the digestive tract. Women that have to take iron supplements may find that they become constipated easily. During pregnancy, your digestion process changes. The colon absorbs more water than it did before, which leaves less water in the stool and causes constipation. For this reason, inadequate fluid consumption can also be a major cause of constipation.
There are many steps you can take to prevent and ease constipation.
- Never ignore the feeling to have a bowel movement. If you feel the need to use the restroom, do so.
- Monitor what you are eating. Eating foods that are high in fiber will help with constipation. Fruits, vegetables, cereals and whole grain breads are excellent choices. Eat small and frequent meals throughout the day.
- Drink six to eight glasses of water every day. Sometimes, apple or prune juice can help prevent constipation as well.
- Exercising keeps your bowels healthy and can prevent constipation. Light or moderate exercise is perfectly safe. Try yoga, walking, swimming or simple stretches to combat constipation.
- If constipation seems to be a problem, speak to your doctor about changing your prenatal vitamin or iron supplement if you are taking one.
- Ask your healthcare provider about a fiber supplement.
Normally, constipation does not become a serious problem and can be treated with some simple measures. However, if you notice any blood in your stools or have pain in your abdomen you should contact your healthcare provider immediately for an evaluation. Generally, doctors will approve a simple stool softener to add moisture to stool to make it easier to pass. However, always ask your caregiver before taking any types of supplements or medications.
If you suffer from constipation and you have to strain to have a bowel movement, you will be more likely to develop hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids are painful, swollen veins in the rectal area.
Comments 1 to 24 of about 45.
1 2 Nextmaggieputs1
217 days ago.
I am only into my 2nd month and constipation is my biggest problem. Prune juice is my friend now. It works. pvgirl
757 days ago.
Ahh help lol ok so first I am constipated for 3 days at a time and then all I do is sit on the toilet for a whole day. Its very frustrating does anybody have any ideas? I would rather be constipated than have the diarrhea cuz its killing me. rathi
1208 days ago.
I found my relief to constipation - KIWI fruit - omg that tiny fruit is so full of Vit C, and it clears your tummy out the next day!!! I was really having HORRIBLE constipation since a week before I knew I was pregnant until now *am 6wks as of today*, and I stumbled upon Kiwi and its magical powers..LOL...and it really works, try it for yourself!!!! If you find it too sour, just add 1/2 scoop of vanilla icecream and have fun!!!!!
1230 days ago.
Ok ladies i had terrible constipation towards the end of my first trimeister. I began throwing up I was so bloated and was going almost 2 weeks in between BM. I tried everything! Kept trying to stay 'natural'. Eventually out of pure frustration I started using microlax enemas. They were instant relief and didnt hurt at all. I used one every 2nd day for a couple weeks and once things got a really good clear out they actually went back to normal and i havent had a problem since. I really recommend them despite the fact that its a little intrusive. mammaK
1231 days ago.
Has anyone experience a lot of bloating, having a bm every other day with nausea? I also have been experience menstraul cramping on and off for about 2 weeks now which I have never experienced with my 3 previous pregnancies.
1318 days ago.
i eat a table spoon or two of organic flax seed, they say if you put it through a grinder it helps faster... works for me, i have hemriods, which causes bleeding but i have been doing this for several months and the flax is great... mum232b
1318 days ago.
Ladies all I have to say is PRUNE JUICE! I sear by it trust me I had 9 months of constipation with my son and thats all that helped! waitforsummer
1323 days ago.
I haven't tried any fiber drinks yet cause I'm not sure what I'm allowed to have - for awhile water and lemon before bed was helping but then I was peeing all night. Any suggestions? I can't tell what is bloat and what is belly! 1dayIwillbeamommyagain
1324 days ago.
Am wondering how long this constipation bit is gonna last? I can't take it anymore!!! Everytime I go I bleed and my Dr doesn't seem too bothered by the fact that I'm passing blood more then I'm passing stool. I'm on Fiber concentrate but it's not working fast enough! Also I don't even eat meat so WTMess!!! Water? Ugh but I do try my best to drink it as often as I can!!!! firstname.lastname@example.org
1380 days ago.
This is nice post which I was awaiting for such an article and I have gained some useful information from this site. Thanks for sharing this information.
1441 days ago.
WOHOO!!! That Fybogel has worked wonders i only took it 30mins ago and i went!!!! For those that never heard of Fybogel its a natural fibre drink they come in lil sachets and you mix it with 150mls of cold water and drink STRAIGHT AWAY or else it goes into a gel if you leave it too long. They come in a range of flavours i got the orange and it tastes ok just dont think about it and drink it quick. It contains Ispaghula Husk which is the key ingredient. I had no pain or straining thank god just strong urge to go so make sure ur stayin at home for the day and close to a toilet!!!! I suppose everybody is different and it may take some ppl longer work. I just will advise anyone not to take anythin that contains Senna as this irritates the gut and can cause uterine contractions which can lead to pre-term labour and no one wants that!!! Im gonna continue to take one sachet of the Fybogel a day to keep me regular i really dont want to be constipated again and i want the piles to stay at bay. i wish all the ladies luck xxx yummymummy0109
1441 days ago.
Oh ladies ur not on ur own ive been constipated for almost two wks now, passed two lil lumps d other day but that was from alot of straining and pushing which hurts. im 11weeks pregnant on my second baby, had no constipation on my first and it was only after the birth that i got piles from the pressure of labour and i suffered so so bad past yr or so and then it just went away but now its back with avengece im so unhappy. I also have Hyperemesis (bad morning sickness) which makes it difficult to store fluids also. Ive a very heavy sensation down there like i really need to go to the toilet but when i try nothing happens. Im tryin Fybogel which aint too bad ive only taken one sacet and i already feel the urge to go i just know its goin to hurt!!! :( The joys of being a woman!!! iwen
1489 days ago.
Janinem- thanks for your sympathy; it's really appreciated...... a gastroenterologist will just advise me to go see my OB based on common pregnancy symptoms; It's a continuum of excuses and drugs. I'm hoping there's other women out there that has experienced the same struggle with non-invasive resolutions, unlike the 'manual manipulation' tamster had to endure.
I'm afraid to take the Doculex since my fluid consumption is not enough and fear more impaction will result.....hoping for a miracle. janinem
1490 days ago.
iwen - sorry to hear about your situation. that sucks!! is there a doctor that specializes more in the bowel area that could help you? there has to be something!! iwen
1490 days ago.
I know EXACTLY the heartache constipation causes, especially during pregnancy. I'm 11 weeks pregnant and am dealing with my 5th day of constipation. I had IBS before becoming pregnant, so my battle with constipation has never ceased but at least I knew how to manage my issues with routine exercises, colon cleansers and detoxes that would now be considered unsafe for the baby. I have 24/7 acid reflux and vomiting, which causes me to sip little amounts of juice (prune juice upsets my stomach) and water everyday, as well as being very selective on my diet (mostly bread, dry cereal, and veggie soups); therefore i do not consume the recommended 8 glasses nor can i keep down the pre-natals for nutrients. From the moment I wake up till the time my head hits the pillow I struggle to keep down foods and fluids, plus mentally struggle from being alone in a newly relocated area (husband is in the military). Depression overwhelms my everyday life due to the pregnancy pains, and my husband tries to understand to the best a MAN is emotionally capable of. I've been taking Ondansetron-for vomiting plus senna extract pill and Docusate for the constipation (which has NOT helped a bit). The Doc recommends that i now take Doculex in addition to the constipation meds. I'm tired of everyone advising me to drink more fluids and eat more fruits/veggies.....I WOULD IF I COULD!!! I am emotionally, physically, and psychologically exhausted from the debilitating state i'm in. The constant nausea, vomiting, headaches, and severe constipation is breaking me down....thanks for listening. affrikka
1499 days ago.
tamster- Oh my gosh, that sounds pretty traumatic. So glad you finally got some real help and good luck with the next few weeks:) tamster
1500 days ago.
Just an update on my last posting just in case anyone is going through the same thing. Went to the OB, she did a rectum exam (sorry!) and said I had nothing down there (I have been telling her that for days!). She called the colon doc for a consultation and decided to put me on the Magnesium Citrate and told me to cont. with the enema. Well, it didn't work either. I went to the hosp. around midnight on Sat. The hosp. doc was great. Instead of sending me back home to take more drugs, she offered to assist me with what known as 'manual manipulation.' It was extremely painful as she had to pull, pinch, and tug the stools down but it produced the results. Supposedly, my baby's head is on an area that prevented nothing to pass through; thus, no amount of laxatives would do me any good. What she did for me was only temporarily but hopefully I would give birth soon and the condition would improve. (Just a side note, most doctors would really rather not offering the 'manual' one--they think it's disgusting. Most of them would just send you back home to take more drugs--the hosp doc above did it for me but when her shift was over, the second doc didn't want to do it. She offered more drugs. I had to firmly tell her no and asked that she cont. with the 'manual' method. She didn't refuse it but I could tell from the disgusted look on her face that she didn't want to do it. She asked me to wait and never came back—I couldn’t blame her. Even my own OB said she has only done that once or twice in her career and really rather not going there. The RNs got together and suggested the hospital version of the enema. Since the first hosp doc helped me quite a bit, the enema did great for me.) 1happimama
1503 days ago.
I feel your pain. I was taking folgard with calcium in the beginning of this pregnancy and it stopped me up so bad I actually had a blockage. My ob kept saying it was a stomach bug, but it would stop for 3 days until I would fill up again and then start all over. They had me on imodium which was the worst thing i could have done. I would eat all day and then get massive diahria(sp), because water was the only thing that could get through,followed about 4 hours later with vomiting. When I would throw up it was all the food I had eaten in the last 8 hours. I know you mentioned coffee, but it was the only thing that kept me out of the ER. I stopped the Calcium suppliment and imodium and drank 4 cups of coffee in a row. The diahria stopped and then later that night I started to move my bowels again. Good luck, I know how frustrating it can be. tamster
1504 days ago.
I have been feeling really down because of my severe constipation. I'm 36 weeks pregnant and have been having this issue since day one; however, it has gotten so bad that I haven't had a bowel movement in 14 days now. I'm not sure if posting this message would do me any good but I feel that I can't get an understanding from anyone, aside from my spouse. I saw my OB yesterday and her comment was, 'Hmm, people are usually constipated during pregnancy but it shouldn't be that bad.' She then advised me to increase the Lactulose to twice a day. I don't mean to be skeptical but I doubt that it would work. I have been doubling the doses for 2 days now and it hasn't worked. I don't think she really believes that I could have been this constipated. I have tried everything including a strict liquid/soft diet to fiber to OTC meds to now the Lactulose. I do not take the prenatal vitamins because of the issue. The Fleet glycerin liquid worked wonder during the first two trimesters but it doesn't do anything for me now. I was so desperate that over the weekend I tried the Enema. Well, that did not work either.
It is so frustrated when my friends and family asking about the pregnancy. They all pretty much said how lucky I'm to have only the constipation issue. Most of their advice has something to do with, 'Oh, just eat prunes and drink water. You'll be fine' or 'I bet my constipation was worse than yours but coffee did it for me.'
I feel as if I'm on an island all by myself as no one seems to understand that I have tried EVERYTHING and nothing is working. I used to be able to go everyday and now it has been 14 days. I'm so miserable but feel like I have no where to turn to. I plan to call my OB again tomorrow and if she couldn't do anything for me. I will take myself directly to the hospital.
To anyone who has read this long message, THANK YOU! I feel so much better to let out my frustration since I feel so alone with my issue.
1549 days ago.
I joined the consipation group today. I didn't have it with my daughter but looks like I am going to have it with this one. I bought some prunes and prune juice today so hoping the will help me out. samb77
1625 days ago.
Try milk sugar, you can take it once a day when you eat or up to three times a day with meals. one dessert spoon in a drink such as herbal tea or juice. but you must drink minimal, 2 litres of liquids with it everyday. Take it everyday of pregnancy. also with one glass of buttermilk a day. Bread, white rice, flour products, chocolate and tomuch dairy will make you more constipated , so avoid or cut it out of your diet. Recommendation from my Swiss Dr. worth a try!! lucyb
1751 days ago.
OH MY GOD - i hate being constipated. lactulose, movicol, suppositories you name it i have tried it as well as fluid increase, exercise diet changes - i just cant go! and when i do i go back to square one. i am seeing my consultant on thursday so i will ask his advice on what to do! manda-may
1770 days ago.
In New Zealand you can get something called 'kiwi crush' in the frozen section of the supermarket. It is actually quite yummy, despite looking like greenish sludge, and you just mix it into a glass of water and have it once a day. Has kiwifruit in it. It worked really well for me when I was pregnant and having problems with constipation. lindsay82
1770 days ago.
I had a huge and chronic problem with constipation due to pregnancy and also because I quit smoking. If I do get a little backed up my doctor gave me some lactulose but normally if I drink alot of water it cures it. Raw veggies and fruit help as well. I don't eat junk foods anymore and also smaller more frequent meals help alot. tanyota1
1864 days ago.
During my first pregnacy 7 years ago, they told me Dulcolax was ok when I had the mother of all cases. This time around, when I am experiencing it all over again, they recommended colace or other stool softener instead of the stimulant laxative (same doctor). So, to the mommy to be who took the Dulcolax, just relax, I am sure you haven't done any harm to your sweet angel inside. I had a perfectly healthy baby after taking it last time. Just contact your doctor, and find out what he recommends from here on out. Do not add that stress to your already stressed (constipated, bloated and probably nauseated) self!