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See What Experts Say Why Are Senior Citizens More Prone To Constipation?

Constipation is defined as having less than three bowel movements per week, although the frequency of defecation can differ significantly from person to person. Some people may have several bowel movements each day, while others may only have one or two per week. The warning signs of it are rare bowel movements and passing dry, hard, or lumpy stools that are painful to expel, along with experiencing stomach pain, cramps, bloating, nausea, and feeling like your bowels aren’t empty after going to the bathroom. It’s important to seek medical advice when these symptoms occur. There are a large number of senior citizens (above 80) who suffer from constipation and may require timely intervention.

Why Are Senior Citizens More Prone To Constipation?

Dr Amit Shobhawat, who is an Internal Medician Expert at Apollo Spectra Mumbai Said, “Seniors over the age of 80 are affected by constipation which is a growing concern among senior citizens, with the number of cases on the rise. This often overlooked condition can significantly affect the quality of life for older individuals. Factors such as reduced physical activity, changes in diet, and certain medications contribute to this troubling trend. The impact of constipation goes beyond physical discomfort and can also lead to other health complications such as hemor.”

Risk Factors:

In this regard, Dr Ruchit Patel, who is a Gastroenterologist at Lilavati Hospital said, “Every week, at least 5-6 patients above the age of 70 complain of constipation. The main risk factors for constipation in old age are as follows:

    • Intake of low fiber diet
    • Immobility
    • Weakness of the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles
    • Decreased sensitivity of the rectum,
    • Chronic Medical Conditions like Diabetes Mellitus,
    • Chronic Kidney Failure,
    • Medication – Analgesics,
    • Certain Antihypertensive drugs, and antipsychotics.

After Efects Of Constipation:

“Constipation not only leads to haemorrhoids, ulcers, abdominal pain, anal fissures, and fistula but even heart attacks and strokes. People usually strain during constipation to pass motions and this can lead to change in blood pressure as well hamper the blood circulation leading to a heart attack or a stroke. Every week, we see approx 15-20 elderly patients with the compliant of severe constipation,” said Dr Hemant Patel, who is a General and Laparoscopic Surgeon at Zynova Shalby Hospital

Ways To Manage Constipation:

In case of constipation, it is very important to consult a doctor. “The doctor will determine the most suitable course of treatment for you, which may include prescribing medication, laxatives, or stool softeners. Other important steps to manage constipation include drinking 3 liters of water per day, and cutting down on processed and sugary foods while eating more fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, pulses, lentils, and legumes. Keeping a food diary to identify triggers for constipation and engaging in regular exercise is necessary,” said Dr Ruchit.

[Disclaimer: The information provided in the article, including treatment suggestions shared by doctors, is intended for general informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.]

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