Constipation 101

Updated: Sep 2, 2020

Having a bowel movement three times a week up to three times a day is within the range of normal stool elimination.






Constipation

Constipation is a large and compact clinical issue which impacts approximately 1/5 of the global population and is the most common digestive complaint responsible for about 2.5 million visits to the doctor annually.

While constipation is present among all groups, older adults, women, and non-Caucasians are predominantly at risk.

If you live with IBS and experience constipation, you’re not alone. Over 50% of those suffering from IBS share this complaint. Constipation can have a profound impact on your well-being and ability to function and may aggravate other IBS symptoms, such as excessive gas, bloating and abdominal pain.

What is constipation?

Having a bowel movement three times a week up to three times a day is within the range of normal stool elimination. Generally, constipation is diagnosed when you have to pass small amounts of stool that are dry and hard, difficult and/or painful to pass and occur fewer than three times a week.

Constipation can be a chronic issue or happen occasionally. Chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC) and the IBS subtype constipation (IBS-C) are the two main types of chronic constipation. IBS-C accounts for about 5% of those who suffer with IBS.

Symptoms

While each individual’s experience of constipation varies, the followings are the most common symptoms: