See a doctor

Constipation Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Skip to: Causes - Treatment - Pregnancy

What is constipation?

Constipation is a really common condition that makes it harder to have regular bowel movements, usually due to hardened faeces.

Constipation while pregnant can be slightly different.

The dictionary definition: "A condition in which there is difficulty in emptying the bowels, usually associated with hardened faeces."

While most people tend to only experience short bouts of constipation, in more serious cases it can last for a long period of time and cause a great deal of pain and discomfort.

If you’re suffering from constipation symptoms or aren’t sure talk to a doctor today. Our GPs can discuss your symptoms, identify the likely cause of your constipation and if needed, prescribe medication to help clear it up.

See a Doctor About Your Constipation
Stomach Cramps
Constipation stomach pains

Causes of Constipation

Constipation can be brought on in a variety of ways and it can often be hard to point to a single cause. However, there’s a range of common issues that typically aggravate the problem, including:

  • Poor dietary habits, like eating lots of junk food
  • Not getting enough fibre in your diet
  • Putting off bowel movements
  • Mental health issues like anxiety
  • Failure to drink enough fluids

Constipation is also common in children during toilet training and if they’re not getting enough nutrition in their diet.

Talk to a Doctor About Constipation

Treatment for Constipation

Typically, changes to diet and lifestyle are the go-to treatment for constipation. This involves things like ramping up your intake of fruit, vegetables and drinking plenty of fluids, as well as doing more exercise.


In more serious cases, or where these changes don’t have the desired results - laxatives are often prescribed to help keep bowel movements regular.

How long does it last?

As mentioned, constipation tends to pass quickly, but in severe or long-term cases, there’s the danger of haemorrhoids (piles) developing, impaction in the bowels and incontinence.

If you’re having a severe bout of constipation, or have suffered from any of the above symptoms for more than a week, it’s recommended that you speak to a GP.

Our doctors will be able to talk through your symptoms, identify probable causes and if needed, prescribe the necessary medication to tackle the condition.

See a Doctor About Your Constipation
Fruit, vegetables & water are great constipation treatment