Constipation can lead to other serious health issuesAug 16, 2022
Let’s start with what Constipation feels like
- Difficult and painful bowel movements.
- Bowel movements fewer than three times a week.
- Feeling bloated or uncomfortable.
- Feeling sluggish.
- Abdominal pain.
Constipation can result from diet changes, insufficient water intake, or not enough fiber. Bowel movements are intended to happen every day. The longer your waste products stay in your body, the more pressure is built up in your intra-abdominal cavity. This can cause leaking from different places.
Our bodies are an ecosystem, and everything is interconnected. When one function isn’t working, this can cause issues in other areas. When stool is sitting in the intestines, it can put pressure on the vaginal wall and bladder.
Constipation and Incontinence
Straining for too long a period of time may cause urine to leak from the bladder and may lead to Incontinence. There are different types of incontinence, one being Fecal or Anal Incontinence resulting from poor muscle tone in the pelvic floor or damage to the anal sphincter.
Constipation and Prolapse
Many women deal with chronic constipation and think it a normal occurrence. They feel that there is so much to do during the day and either put off having a bowel movement or rush and don’t spend enough time in the bathroom, which can turn into chronic constipation. In fact, it may lead to a more serious health issue called Pelvic Prolapse. Prolapse can occur in the bladder, the uterus and/or the rectum.
If you are suffering from pain during a bowel movement in the rectum, rectal bleeding, constipation, have difficulty urinating or have urges to go often, are experiencing pain during intercourse, or feel like something is bulging into the vagina, these are signs of pelvic prolapse.
Constipation also makes your body anxious as it causes you to build up a significant amount of toxicity, which irritates and creates stress on your system. When the colon's muscle contractions are slow or sluggish, the stool moves through the colon too slowly, absorbing too much water.
Some of the most common causes of constipation are:
- Eating foods low in fiber.
- Dehydration - not drinking enough water
- Not getting enough exercise.
- Changes in your regular routine, such as travelling, eating or going to bed at different times.
- Eating large amounts of milk or cheese.
- Changes in habits or lifestyle, such as travel, pregnancy, and old age
- Resisting the urge to have a bowel movement.
What can we do to prevent constipation and other serious health issues?
Making simple changes to your eating and lifestyle is a good start. Do not delay going to the bathroom if you have the urge. Raising your knees above your hips may help. A great product on the market called a squatty potty will assist in raising your knees.
Personally, being someone who has had a rectocele and uterine prolapse (read about my journey below), this is my daily routine:
- I start my morning with a natural probiotic – Renew Life 50 billion
- I drink lots of Water, up to 3 litres a day
- I try to get 30 grams of fibre a day or a bit more of a balance of soluble and insoluble
- Here is an article explaining the difference - Soluble and insoluble fiber: What is the difference?
- Move every day – Walking is great if you are not up to other forms of exercise.
- At night I take something called Colin Clenze, so I know my body is ready to start a new day.
The 28-Day Challenge and Buff Muff Membership
I recommend checking out my comprehensive pelvic health education and fitness programs on my Buff Muff App. The most complete Pelvic Floor & Kegel exercise App to strengthen the pelvic floor.
The Buff Muff 28-Day Challenge (housed in the App) gets you started, and the Annual membership keeps you progressing so you can laugh, run, jump, and lift without the pesky leaks and annoying discomfort of prolapse symptoms.