Bowel habits are different to everyone, most people do the bowel movement on a daily basis, and others have it every other day or three times a week. As we age, the number of bowel movements generally decreases. Constipation happens when stool passes through the large intestine too slowly or slow passage of digesting food through any part of the intestines and when the stool stays in the large intestine too long, the intestine removes too much water which make the stool become dry and hard thus making difficulty passing stools or sense of incomplete emptying after a bowel movement.
Stress, changing a normal diet like eating on a low fiber diet, ignoring the urge to have a bowel movement, not drinking enough water, intake of painkillers with codeine, depression medicines and antacids are just some of the lifestyle habits can cause constipation. Moreover, medical conditions like pregnancy, problems related with the muscles and nerves in the intestine, rectum or anus also causes constipation.
As constipation affects almost everyone at one time or another, it is important for us to learn how it can be prevented. It is very important to set aside enough time for a complete bowel movement and never ignore the urge to defecate. Eating a well-balanced high fiber diet that includes whole grains, cereals, vegetables and fresh fruits as well as drinking plenty of fluids and a regular exercise can prevent its recurrence.