Constipation Q & A
What is constipation?
Occasional difficulty in the bathroom is normal, and not usually a cause for concern. If you find that you’re moving your bowels very infrequently, or have trouble passing stool, you should schedule an appointment with Dr. Rubin to determine the cause.
What causes constipation?
It can be difficult to determine the exact cause of chronic constipation, as many different factors can create difficulty in proper bowel function. Some of the more common causes include:
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Narrowed colon
- Bowel obstruction
- Weakened pelvic muscles
- Underactive thyroid
- Poor diet
- Certain medications
Getting to the bottom of what’s causing your constipation is key to finding relief.
How is constipation diagnosed?
Dr. Rubin begins with a thorough physical exam and health history. He asks about your diet and any recent lifestyle or health changes that might factor into your constipation.
The diagnostic path might also include blood testing, a stool sample, x-rays or a colonoscopy to allow Dr. Rubin to examine your colon. Depending on the outcome of these steps, additional testing may be advised.
What treatments help with constipation?
Treatment depends on the cause of your constipation. Dr. Rubin works with you to ensure that your diet supports healthy bowel function. Increasing your fiber intake and incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your diet can go a long way toward easing your bathroom troubles.
Laxatives and other medications can help prompt regular bowel movements. Some laxatives work by stimulating intestinal contractions, others contain lubricants or stool softeners. Be sure to discuss laxative use with Dr. Rubin, as prolonged use of some over-the-counter options can cause lasting damage.
Pelvic floor exercises can also be effective in treating constipation. In some cases, surgery is necessary to repair physical problems within your bowel.
There’s a treatment path for every set of needs, and the process begins by booking your appointment with Dr. Rubin today.