Constipation is defined as bowel movements characterized by hard feces that is difficult to expel.
When food leaves the stomach, it’s still a partly digested mush. Your body recuperates valuable fluid from it while it’s moved down the colon (large intestine). This transforms it into normal feces. The longer it stays in the colon, the drier and harder it gets.
Obviously, the quantity also increases if you wait to go to the toilet. A large, hard stool can be painful and difficult to pass, which then makes people reluctant to go, thereby creating a vicious cycle.
Chronic constipation can last for months or years. It’s usually caused by poor diet, by some other disease, or by regularly ignoring the urge to go to the toilet. Low-fibre diets and insufficient water intake are the leading causes of constipation.
Water and salt are mixed with waste in the large intestine. When the body reabsorbs too much of the liquid, the stools become hard and sluggish. Stool is propelled through the intestine by muscle contractions. If the muscle contractions of the intestines are slow, then constipation occurs. A number of factors may contribute to intestinal slowdown, including inadequate fluid or fiber intake, lack of physical activity, irritable bowel syndrome, intestinal obstructions, medications, hormonal disturbances, autoimmune diseases, and injuries to the spinal cord.
In rare cases, constipation may signal a more serious medical condition such as colorectal cancer.
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