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Constipation during Pregnancy

Updated on April 8, 2011

Constipation during pregnancy is a normal occurrence. It happens with other discomforts such as backache, leg cramps, nausea and urinary incontinence. Constipation during pregnancy can be attributed to increased production of a hormone known as progesterone.

Progesterone naturally increases during pregnancy to stop milk production until a woman has given birth. Unfortunately, constipation during pregnancy happens as a result of too much progesterone. A pregnant woman usually has a slower digestive system that results to straining when moving bowel.

Possibly, a change in eating habits would lead to constipation problems too. Women who are having a baby usually eat a lot of food to nourish their body. In some cases, these women do not drink much water because it creates urinary incontinence. As a result, dehydration occurs and the stools become hard and dry leading to constipation. Likewise, pregnant women need to take food supplements like iron and calcium.

Iron intake of a pregnant woman is much higher because the baby needs it too. Low iron in women during pregnancy is bad because it can cause complications such as low birth weight or even preterm birth. Typically, doctors suggest 18 mg of iron daily for pregnant women; however, this dosage can also cause constipation in pregnancy.

Here are some useful suggestions to pregnant women to prevent constipation during pregnancy:

1. Consume fruits and vegetables.

By doing so, fiber is increased that leads to more bulk formation of stools. It is a fact that iron is necessary for pregnant women which cause constipation;yet, eating more fiber can solve this problem. Laxatives should never be used because these can trigger abdominal contractions which is dangerous for pregnant women.

2. Drink adequate liquid.

Water is a factor in promoting a healthy body. Water, aside from cooling the body,has a vital role in effective digestion as well as elimination of body waste.

In the long run, this seems a very inconvenient situation for the woman to always go to the bathroom, but hydration is important.

3. Exercise.

Pregnant women have to do light to exercise. Exercise boosts the circulatory system of the body making it more stronger and healthier.

Also, exercise can aid constipation during pregnancy because it causes the system to function properly. Individuals who engage in physical activity rarely get constipated.Constipation during pregnancy can altogether be avoided as long as the practical tips aforementioned are followed.

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