If you experience chronic constipation, it can disrupt your daily routine and make you uncomfortable. At GastroCare LI, in Valley Stream, New York, the experienced board-certified gastroenterologists, including Bradley Rieders, MD, and Brandon Rieders, MD, offer compassionate patient-centric care to help you find constipation solutions that work. Call the office or click on the scheduling link to make your appointment today.

request an appointment

What is constipation?

Constipation means that you have difficulty having regular bowel movements. Doctors diagnose constipation when you have three or fewer bowel movements per week.

Most people experience constipation now and then, but it usually abates relatively quickly. In contrast, chronic constipation lasts for a couple of weeks or longer.

What are the symptoms of chronic constipation?

Chronic constipation can cause problems such as:

  • Unusually lumpy stool
  • Very hard stool
  • Feeling of a blockage in your rectum
  • Discomfort before or during bowel movements
  • Needing to push or strain to have bowel movements

In most cases, constipation is a sign of an underlying condition, so you might also experience other issues at the same time. Chronic constipation can also lead to complications like tiny tears in the anus(fissures), swollen veins in the rectum or anus (hemorrhoids), or stool stuck in the anus (impaction).

What causes constipation?

Constipation may occur for many reasons, with some of the common causes including:

  • Dehydration
  • Pregnancy
  • Diabetes
  • Hormone imbalance
  • Cancer
  • Muscle function problems (pelvic floor dysfunction)
  • Lower abdominal injuries
  • Irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C)
  • Regularly taking opioid medications

To determine the type of treatment you need, your GastroCare LI provider must first identify the cause of your constipation. To do so, they’ll perform a physical exam and review your medical history. You may need tests as well. One common test involves inserting a gel into your rectum and taking X-ray and MRI pictures as you pass it.

How is constipation treated?

GastroCare LI tailors your constipation treatment based on the cause. Dietary adjustments, including an increase in fiber and water intake, helps many people with constipation. Regular exercise is also helpful in establishing regular bowel habits, and your doctor might also recommend special pelvic floor exercises.

Some people with chronic constipation may need prescription medication to pull water into their stool or speed up stool movement. If you experience complications due to constipation, you could require surgery. So, it’s best to reach out for help sooner rather than later.

Are you living with chronic constipation? The experienced board-certified gastroenterologists at GastroCare LI offer accurate diagnostics and effective treatments, so don’t wait to get help. Book your appointment online or call the office to schedule a consultation today.