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Constipation during pregnancy is a commonly occurring condition. However, it is very uncomfortable for the person experiencing it. The main cause of constipation is that the digestive system undergoes several changes because of the change in hormones. During pregnancy, it is all the more important to watch the diet and maintain regular bowel movements.
A pregnant woman’s body produces various hormones, and these hormones are more than what the body requires. These hormones guard the fetus and make sure it develops normally. In the process, these hormones slow down the movement of the intestine. Progesterone, one of the hormones released by women also relaxes the muscles. The bowel, which is a muscle, get relaxed and therefore, is unable to constrict to eliminate the waste through the anus, leading to constipation during pregnancy. In pregnancy, women should have a highly fibrous diet and drink plenty of fluids to avoid constipation.
Symptoms of constipation during pregnancy include having bowel movements only once in four days; the stools being hard and difficult to pass out through the anus; bleeding from the rectum due to straining; and pain in the lower part of the abdomen. Pregnant women should take the signs of constipation seriously, as in some cases constipation cause complications in birth.
Some of the remedies for pregnancy related constipation are eating more fiber, drinking additional amount of water and also regular and mild exercise. All of these in combination can help to alleviate the discomfort caused by constipation. Do not take any laxatives without consulting your physician.
Fiber helps the digestive system by pushing out the excretory material easily out the bowels and it also makes the bowel work harder. The feces also remain soft and un-constipated. Some of the fiber rich foods are fresh fruits and vegetables, prune juice, whole wheat bread and cereals. You can even have different types of beans, as they are high in fiber.
Drinking plenty of water rand juices also helps. If there is sufficient amount of liquid in your diet, you can easily avoid constipation. Water also help the feces become soft and push them out of the bowels. Aim at drinking at least 2 liters of water every day when pregnant. That will amount to 8 glasses. Even fruit juices and green tea can help you with the constipation.
Exercise helps in digestion in general. It stimulates the bowel movements and also improves the digestion and appetite as well. Do not indulge in any vigorous form of exercise without asking your doctor. Walking or even swimming for twenty to thirty minutes is adequate. Exercise also eases the muscles in the uterus and you can aim at having a normal delivery. Exercise also makes you thirsty and increases your water consumption.
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Net Doctor: Constipation During Pregnancy