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Treating ConstipationEstre±imiento: Tratamiento

Treating Constipation

Note: If necessary, your doctor may recommend an over-the-counter fiber supplement.

Constipation is a common and often uncomfortable problem. You have constipation if you have bowel movements less often than usual or strain to pass hard, dry stool. Constipation can be a temporary problem that lasts a short time. Or it can be a chronic problem that never seems to go away. Fortunately, it can often be controlled.

Man grocery shopping for high fiber foods

Eat More Fiber

  • One of the best ways to help treat constipation is to eat a high-fiber diet.

  • Fiber (in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables) adds bulk and absorbs water to soften the stool. This helps the stool pass through the colon more easily.

  • Drinking more water can also help soften stool.

Get Regular Exercise

  • Regular exercise helps improve the working of your colon and helps ease constipation.

  • Ask your health care provider about starting a regular exercise program.

Avoid Chronic Laxative Use

  • Laxatives stimulate the colon to work more rapidly. Continuous use of laxatives can cause the colon to stretch and weaken, and eventually the colon may not work right without them.

  • Your doctor can help you overcome a dependence on laxatives.

  • Never use laxatives without consulting your health care provider first.

High-Fiber Hints

Eating more of the following foods can add fiber to your diet and help prevent constipation:

  • High-fiber cereals

  • Whole grains, bran, and brown rice

  • Vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, and greens

  • Fresh fruits (especially apples, pears, and dried fruits like raisins and apricots)

  • Nuts and legumes (especially beans such as lentils, kidney beans, and lima beans)

Date Last Reviewed:

Date Last Modified: 2002-07-09T00:00:00-06:00



I just wanted to say thank you very much for getting me in promptly and taking very good care of me during my hard times. I appreciate your office following up on my care and making sure all the testing, pre-certs were taken care of so it was less stressful for me. I also appreciate all the care and support from every staff member in your office. It really shows how much you guys care about your patients.
Thank you,
Pete Damico

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