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Constipation is a condition of the digestive system in which the person finds it difficult to expel the fecal matter. The person may experience infrequent bowel movements which may persist for several days to weeks. Occasional constipation is a common condition many people may experience. But, chronic constipation is a serious condition which may interfere in the ability to perform the daily activities.
The normal duration between bowel movements may vary from one person to another and therefore a few people may have bowel movements two to three times a day and a few may have bowel movements two to three times a week. This makes the fecal matter hard and difficult to expel.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
The signs and symptoms of constipation are:
The process of digestion begins with the munching of food. It passes through the mouth, stomach, small intestine, then leads to the large intestine, and finally gets out of the body through the rectum.
Constipation occurs when the large intestine absorbs too much water from the food and makes it hard and difficult to push it out of the body. The various causes of constipation are;
The tests performed to diagnose the condition are based on the severity, age, duration of the problem, any changes observed in the bowel movements etc. Not many tests are required to diagnose the condition.
The following tests are performed for people with severe symptoms.
Though, the treatment procedure differs based on the severity and duration of constipation, dietary changes help in getting relief from the symptoms. Treatment includes eating food like whole grains, bran cereals, fruits, vegetables, and other fiber rich food, and consuming enough water, fruit and vegetable juice to avoid dehydration. Also, allot time for regular exercise. Do not ignore the urge to have a bowel movement. In severe cases laxatives and enemas may be recommended for a short time.
Few simple steps to prevent constipation are:
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