Constipation occurs when there is abdominal pain or discomfort, difficult and infrequent bowel movements, and the passage of hard stools. Unfortunately, constipation affects approximately half of all women at some point during their pregnancy.
In general, worry, anxiety, minimal physical exercise, and a low-fiber diet may cause constipation. An increase in the prevalence of constipation in pregnant women is thought to occur due to hormones that relax the intestinal muscle and by pressure caused by the expanding uterus on the intestines. Relaxation of the intestinal muscle causes food and waste to move slower through your system.
Sometimes iron tablets may contribute to constipation. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water if you are taking iron supplements. You may need to switch to a different type of iron tablet, but it is important to talk to your doctor first.
Prevention and treatment of constipation involve much of the same thing. Here are a few things that you can do to help prevent constipation from occurring or treat it if you are already experiencing it:
Laxative pills are NOT recommended for the treatment of constipation during pregnancy because there is a possibility that they could stimulate uterine contractions.
Mineral oils should NOT be used during pregnancy because there is a high reduction in nutrient absorption.
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