Constipation – A Common Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptom

What is Constipation?

Constipation is a Latin word, deduced from the term ‘Constipare’ meaning ‘to press, crowd together’.

Constipation is a condition in which bowel movements are infrequent or incomplete as per the Medilexicon’s medical dictionary. Constipation is also known as irregularity and costiveness. It is related to the condition of the digestive system where people have to suffer from hard faeces which become even harder to expel. This kind of situation arises when the colon in our body has absorbed too much of water from the food. When the food moves slower than usual through your digestive tract, the colon in your body then absorbs more water from the food and, as a result the faeces become dry and hard. Expurgation can lead to some serious issues as there may be symptoms of bowel obstruction which might be very painful.

The connection between Constipation and Arthritis?

Constipation generally affects people with RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) because of medications. While constipation can occur with just about any medicine or medication, it is most commonly seen occurring with the narcotic pain medications, including propoxyphene (Darvocet), hydrocodone (Vicodin), etc. Therefore, doctors always recommend to be well hydrated always. Also, it is recommended to take herbal Arthritis pain relief/joint pain relief medicines in order to avoid any ill effects. The best herbal medicines for arthritis generally don’t cause problems like constipation.

What else can cause Constipation?

  • Your diet charts can affect your digestive system harshly. It is said that an unhealthy lifestyle is a serious threat to the health of an individual. When a person engages in too much of junk food and forgets his proper/balanced diet; he/she becomes prone to consumption from the words go! There’s no denying the fact that healthy food helps an individual in keeping fit while unhealthy food may complicate the functioning of the body system leading to problems like constipation.
  • Laziness is another cause for constipation. People who are lethargic and refrain from doing their daily activities on a timely basis fall prey to constipation quite easily. Laziness and a rough lifestyle may not only lead to constipation but obesity as well which may prove fatal in the long run. It is important to keep a check on one’s schedule and diet plan in order to be able to fight with problems like constipation.
  • Constipation is a major problem with people of old age for it is said that physical activities help us in increasing the rate of metabolism; but as we know, old age people face problems while going for physical activities and most of the times they spend their time lying down for long durations, their chances of acquiring constipation increases significantly.
  • There are different kinds of medications that may be held responsible for increasing the risk of constipation. Drugs like narcotic pain drugs, aluminium containing antacids, etc. are sometimes responsible for leading to constipation problems.
  • Constipation may be sometimes caused due to extra consumption of milk and dairy products. Aging also slows down the metabolism in our body which yet again, is another reason responsible for constipation.

How to avoid/cure it?

Constipation revolves around itself without any treatment, so consumption of a lot of water every day is must. The treatment of constipation includes change of daily habits. Drinking of more water, foods with proper fibre and fitness of your body is very important mainly for old aged people. Most cases of constipation are treated successfully by laxatives. It is also important to find out what actually has been the reason for such state.

Therefore, one must pay regular visits to the washrooms and get in touch with the doctor in case the problem continues to persist. Constipation can be easily treated and may even be avoided if one sticks to a healthy lifestyle.