Complications of Constipation

Published on November 4, 2015

Constipation hardly ever causes any long-term health issues or complications. Constipation treatment is usually very effective, especially if treatment is started immediately. However, if you are experiencing long-term, chronic constipation, you could be at a higher risk of experiencing complications.

Symptoms of constipation

  • Feeling less of an urge to open bowels.
  • Dry, hard stools that are painful to pass.
  • Having to strain to pass the movement.
  • Sitting on toilet longer than normal.
  • Abdominal cramping.
  • Abdominal bloating.
  • Not feeling as if you fully emptied bowels after going.

In some instances, more serious events or illnesses like systemic diseases, and tumours can cause constipation.

Complications of Constipation

  • 1. Rectal Prolapse – Protruding intestine from the anus caused by straining to have a motion.
  • 2. Faecal Impaction – Not being able to expel stool. Chronic constipation can harden stool leading to it getting stuck in the intestines.
  • 3. Anal Fissure – Skin in your anus that is torn due to hard or large stools.
  • 4. Haemorrhoids – Veins that are swollen in your anus caused by straining to have a motion.
  • 5. Rectal Bleeding – Constant straining to pass stools can lead to discomfort, pain and rectal bleeding. This is a result of small tearing around the anus, but usually results from haemorrhoids.
  • 6. Diverticulosis – A digestive disease that is quite common that involves pouch formations in the bowel wall (diverticula).
  • 7. Encopresis – Also referred to as stool soiling or stool holding which normally occurs around the age of four. This happens when your child resists the urge to have a bowel movement that can cause impacted stool to collect in rectum and colon.
  • 8. Risk of Stroke or Heart Attack – Heavy straining may trigger stroke or heart attack.

Chronic Constipation Treatments

A natural remedy for constipation begins with lifestyle and dietary changes, which will increase the speed of your stool and how it moves through your intestines.

Increase your Fibre Intake

Food for constipation should include fibre. By adding more fibre to your diet, it helps to increase the weight of your stool, as well as how fast it moves through your intestines. You can start by introducing more vegetables and fruits in your diet each day and add in some whole-grain cereals and breads.

Use Laxatives

Laxative tablets, such as Dulcolax® tablets, work by making it easier to pass a bowel movement.

Use Constipation Medications

These are usually prescribed for treating chronic constipation.

Consider Biofeedback

This process involves working with a trained therapist who will use specific devices for helping you to learn to tighten and relax your pelvic muscles which helps pass stool more easily.

Some recommendations to treat constipation in children include:

  • Encourage more exercise.
  • Encourage a regular toilet routine.
  • Keep laxative use down to a minimum.
  • Visit the doctor if the constipation becomes chronic.

Always read the label and follow the directions for use.

Learn about which Dulcolax product may be appropriate for you.


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