When a person passes less than three bowel movements a week or has difficult bowel movements.

Patient should be considered to be constipated only if defaecation is explainably delayed for days or if stools are unusually hard, dry, and difficult to expel. Causes of constipation are:
• Dietary factors-highly refined or low fibre foods, inadequate fluids.
• Physical inactivity, inadequate exercise and prolon- ged bed rest.
• Pregnancy.
• Advanced age.
• Drugs—Anaesthesia, antacids, ganglion blocking


Treatment:-


-Cathartics and enema should not be used.
-Foods with high fibre content such as bran and raw fruits and vegetables may be helpful.
-8 to 10 glasses of fluids daily are to be taken.
-Dulcolax 10-15 mg acts within 6-12 hours.
-Glycerine suppository, a potent rectal agent for lubricating hard faecal matter; 3 gm acts in 30 minutes.

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