Menopausal constipation generally occurs due to the slowing of the gastrointestinal system and heavy demands put on the liver. Eating while stressed, overeating or eating too many unhealthy foods may make your digestive life harder.
In general, constipation has the following symptoms:
- Fewer than three bowel movements per week.
- Hard, dry or small stools; which are difficult to pass.
- The feeling that your rectum is still occupied after a bowel movement.
- The need to strain excessively during a bowel movement.
- The frequent use of enemas, laxatives or suppositories.
- Constant feelings of bloat and sluggishness.
More than 80-percent of all people have experienced constipation and bloating at least once in their lifetime. Severe symptoms like rectal bleeding, abdominal distention or abdominal pain are suffered by people of all ages especially during middle age. Due to the increased stress, bodily changes and hormone imbalances that women experience during menopause, constipation combined with depression or insomnia are typical.
Many of the medications prescribed to ease other symptoms of menopause also have side effects that can cause constipation. The most common being medications like Clonidine, which is usually prescribed for high blood pressure, as well as calcium and iron supplements, tranquilizers, antidepressants, general anesthesia and narcotic pain killers.
When discussing constipation we typically focus on the diet. Eating fibre-rich foods such as whole grain breads and cereals typically come highly recommended. Fresh vegetables, fruits and fruit juice provide plenty of vitamins that encourage your rectum to work properly. On the other hand, the amount of water you drink (per day) is even more important. Make sure to drink between 8 and 10 glasses of water daily to keep your body hydrated and well-functioning. On top of diet, regular physical activity is equally important to perform frequently.
In addition, its important to avoid delaying bowel movements when you have the urge to go to the bathroom.