Constipation and bloating is a very common problem, it is so common that at least 3 out of every 5 people must have experienced constipation at some point in their lives, and if you have not yet experienced it, chances are that you will.
But I assume you are here looking for remedies to get rid of constipation and bloating because you are backed up.
It’s alright, it happens to the best of us.
If you are not entirely sure what constipation is, it simply refers to when a person has difficulty emptying their bowel, their stools become hard and they might even sometimes require help passing their stool.
It can be a real pain in the butt. You might not know it but passing stool is a very vital function for the body to be healthy.
Bloating largely accompanies constipation and It makes you assume that your stomach is filled with air just like a balloon.
In many cases, it is a side effect of constipation.
A healthy person should pass at least three bowel movements per week, I believe you should make it part of your everyday routine, you can’t ever go wrong with that.
Naturally, constipation and bloating can be very uncomfortable but it is never really a life-threatening condition, though it might feel like it when you are on the toilet.
There are many home remedies to get rid of constipation at your disposal.
This is not to say that there are no extreme constipation cases, most chronic constipation and bloating cases happen when the minor constipation is left unattended.
Constipation and bloating can also become life-threatening when it is caused by a more serious underlying condition, if this happens to be the case, you should seek immediate medical attention.
- Having less than 3 bowel movements in a week is the biggest pointer to constipation.
- Dry, hard, and lumpy stools.
- Stomach aches
- Stools become difficult and painful to pass
- Loss of appetite
- Bloated feeling
TYPES OF CONSTIPATION
Before trying out a bunch of remedies to get rid of constipation, it is important to determine if it should be treated by remedies or by a medical professional.
There are mainly two types of constipation, they are primary and secondary constipation.
Primary constipation simply refers to the type of constipation that occurs without any obvious cause while secondary constipation occurs as a result of certain factors and or underlying conditions.
This is the type of constipation whereby constipation itself is the primary medical problem and not just a symptom of a different medical problem. It can be sometimes referred to as “idiopathic” or “functional” constipation.
This type of constipation is usually mild and you can try a few home remedies to get rid of constipation.
Primary constipation is also further divided into three different types, they are;
1. Normal Transit Constipation
This is a condition whereby a person perceives themselves to be constipated due to symptoms like abdominal bloating and pain, however, the consistency of their stools and their colonic motility remain normal.
The way the muscles contract and relax to move contents through the colon is known as ‘’Colonic Motility”.
A person with normal transit constipation might also have difficulty passing stool mainly because their stool is harder than usual.
2. Slow Transit Constipation
As opposed to normal transit constipation, colonic motility is decreased in slow transit constipation, hence the name. People who have slow transit constipation do not have normal bowel movements after they have eaten.
What this means is that food moves through their digestive tract slower than it should, their stools also take longer to pass through the colon and when stool stays in the intestines for too long, they become harder and more difficult to pass.
3. Outlet Constipation
This condition can also be referred to as outlet constipation, it occurs when there has been damage to the pelvic floor.
A pelvic floor is a group of muscles that play an important role in defecation. People who have pelvic floor dysfunction have a defect in the coordination needed for stool evacuation.
This is a result of the failure of their pelvic floor muscles to contract and relax appropriately.
This certainly makes it much more difficult to pass stool. This type of constipation can easily turn to chronic constipation if it is not treated urgently.
Secondary constipation is simply the type of constipation that occurs as a result of an underlying condition or sometimes even a side effect of certain medications.
Many medications have constipation as one of their side effects. The treatment of secondary constipation should be handled by a professional because the cause of constipation must first be identified and then treated.
For example, a person whose underlying condition is diabetes should not be treated at home with home remedies, the person would have to seek medical attention.
And yes, if you are wondering how diabetes and constipation are connected; uncontrolled diabetes can often increase the risks of nerve damage, one of the causes of outlet constipation.
- Inadequate consumption of fiber such as fruits, vegetables, and cereals
- Ignoring the urge to pass stools
- Anxiety or depression
- Not drinking enough water
- Side effects of medication (narcotics, ibuprofen, antidepressants, antacids, etc.)
- Not getting enough exercise
- Drastic routine changes
HOME REMEDIES TO GET RID OF CONSTIPATION
1. Drink plenty of water
Water is one of the best remedies to get rid of constipation and bloating, as you probably already know, water is very important for our bodies to carry out its functions properly and of those functions is pooping, yes pooping.
Constant dehydration is one of the major causes of primary constipation, which means regular intake of water can help to prevent or reduce the risks of having constipation.
If you already have constipation, it is not too late to start chugging some water, it will still help soften your stool.
Sparkling water (carbonated) has been known to work faster than regular water in working as quick constipation relief
It works best in people who have constipation as a result of indigestion. It is important to note however that carbonated drinks such as sugary soda should not be a substitute for water when considering remedies to get rid of constipation.
These drinks can have harmful effects on your health as well as make your constipation worse. Your safest option is water, you can never go wrong with that.
2. Consume more fiber
Hmmm, Fiber, nature’s best stool softener. Fiber is generally known to be good for digestion and luckily for you, it is readily available. Fiber is the non-digestible carbohydrates that exist in plants, it can be found in all plant foods, fruits, vegetables, nuts, etc. These plants often contain two types of fiber; soluble and insoluble fiber. The two types of fiber help to aid digestion and defecation in two different ways.
The soluble fiber absorbs water in your digestive tract and forms a gel-like substance that helps your stools to pass smoothly while the insoluble fiber makes your stools larger and pushes them through your bowels. As you can see, the two types of fiber work as a team, one makes your stools softer while the other bulks up your stool and makes sure everything gets out.
Fiber is one of the best remedies to get rid of constipation and bloating but it can be prevention too. Simply incorporate adequate fiber into your diet and you will have a positive change in your “gut health.”
Yes, I know you probably don’t want to hear this but sitting around all day and doing nothing is not only bad for your mental health, but it can also make it harder for you to poop too.
You must have heard this a million times but yes, exercise is good for you, for so many reasons, being able to poop without trouble is one of them.
Now you must be wondering how I expect you to drop down and do pushups when you desperately need to poop, hear me out. Exercise will most likely give you the relief you need, it doesn’t have to be vigorous exercise, you could simply go for a run or a walk if you are worried about moving so much.
Exercise can help to stimulate the muscles in your intestines and help your bowels move faster.
This Exercise is also one of the best remedies to get rid of constipation and bloating and it can be a preventive measure too. Add a little exercise to your daily routine and it will help you maintain healthy bowel movements.
Walking or jogging for about 15-30 minutes every day is enough to keep your bowel movements regular.
4. Abdominal massage
This is one of the easiest ways to get rid of your bloating and constipation.
Massaging the abdomen can bring you relief from bloating and from constipation and it can do it fast.
Before you start, drink a hot cup of water or tea, it will help soften your stool.
After drinking the hot water or tea, you can now begin to press your abdomen in a clockwise motion while you are lying on your back, do this for about ten minutes, and should start feeling better.
The reason for the clockwise motion is so your stool can be pushed from your colon towards your rectum. You could do this every morning to further improve your gastrointestinal system.
Consuming lemon juice is one of the easiest and most effective remedies to get rid of constipation.
This is mainly because citric acid is a natural laxative and it is abundant in lemons, it also can fight the toxins present in your digestive tract.
Lemon also has an abundance of vitamin C, which is often used to treat indigestion.
All these qualities combined make lemon juice a very quick constipation relief.
Get yourself a cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice or simply add a few tablespoons of lemon juice to a cup of warm water, depending on how severe your constipation is.
You could take a cup of warm water with a tablespoon of lemon juice every morning to improve your general gastrointestinal system.
This is a non-absorbable sugar that is often used in constipation treatments, simply put, lactulose is a laxative and it can be taken orally or through the rectum.
Lactulose through the rectum should only be administered by health care practitioners, it is often used to treat a more severe condition called portal-systematic encephalopathy.
Lactulose for constipation relieves constipation by absorbing water into the bowel and making the stool softer.
It is great for severe constipation and bloating treatment, it takes about 8-12 hours before it begins to work though, so you might have to be a little patient but you can rest assured that it can even get rid of extreme cases of constipation and bloating.
7. Laxative tea
Warm liquids are generally good for your digestive and gastrointestinal systems but you can take it one step further by making a laxative tea.
It is very common knowledge that laxatives are probably the best remedies to get rid of constipation and bloating.
There are several types of tea you can use to get rid of constipation, some examples are;
This tea is also known as the ‘warming herb” because of the warm and minty sensation you get when you drink it. This tea is not only refreshing but will also help you speed up your bowel movements too.
The hot water in the tea helps to stimulate proper digestion while ginger possesses mild laxative properties.
Chamomile is a popular fragrant herb that is often used in making tea, it has a very soothing effect on the body and it helps to relax the muscles of your intestines, eliminate gas and relieve intestinal irritation.
Drinking a cup of chamomile will bring quick relief from your constipation and bloating.
Dandelion is known to help reduce stress on the liver and aid its ability to produce bile. It is a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps to filter kidney toxins and improve blood flow.
This helps with mild constipation and bloating because it can add more water to your digestive system, making your stools softer and easier to pass.
Drink a cup of dandelion tea if you are feeling a little bloated or constipated and you should have almost instantaneous relief.
Parsley is a common herb that is traditionally used to treat mild issues like bad breath and flatulence.
Studies have shown that parsley can also help treat digestive disorders such as indigestion and constipation.
A tea that incorporates the leaves or seeds of parsley will help to get rid of constipation.
8. Coconut water
Drinking coconut water is a great way to hydrate and detoxify your body, it can help increase your kidney function and stimulate your digestive system.
Coconut water is also rich in magnesium and magnesium can help to relax the muscles of your intestines, making it easier to have a bowel movement.
The mild taste of coconut water must have you thinking it cannot have laxative properties but if you drink enough of it, you will soon discover that it is capable of being a laxative.
The potassium present in coconut water will also help flush out sodium from your body, therefore reducing bloating.
If you are looking for food that makes you poop immediately, you might want to consider eating a lot of almonds.
Nuts are naturally very filling foods that are rich in fiber and as we have mentioned earlier, fiber helps to ease constipation.
Honey is naturally packed with enzymes that are good for digestion, this property makes honey a perfect remedy for mild constipation.
You can take it plainly or add it to warm water to speed up the process.
11. Baking Soda
If you saw this coming then you are probably aware of the many uses of baking soda.
What can baking soda not do?
It is a must-have in every home, it comes in handy when you are cooking and it is also used for so many home remedies.
To get rid of constipation with baking soda, make a solution of baking soda and warm water, use one teaspoon of baking soda to ¼ cup of warm water.
The baking soda will react to the acids in your stomach to kick start a bowel movement.