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24 hours rehab
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24 hours rehab

Call Now for Immediate Confidential Help and Advice 02038 115 619

24 hours rehab
Immediate Access for help and advice

What Is Constipation?

Constipation is a condition in which defecating becomes difficult, or even impossible, without pharmaceutical assistance, as a result of hard-to-pass stools developing in the gut. Constipation has a great many possible causes and can affect pretty much anybody. I In the vast majority of cases, it is comparatively short-lived, but protracted or very frequent cases can lead to complications including haemorrhoids, faecal impaction, anal fissure, and even much more serious issues such as stroke as a result of excessive straining.

What Causes Constipation?

Constipation can result from a broad variety of causes, which are typically divided into three categories: congenital (including diseases present at birth and deformities of the anus and intestines); primary, or functional (the largest category, including dietary issues and insufficient exercise); and secondary (which include side effects of some drugs, including opioids).

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Constipation as an Addiction Symptom

Constipation is not so much a symptom of addiction as it is of substance use and abuse. A very large number of drugs – both illicit and otherwise – can have constipation as a side effect. It is most notoriously associated with the consumption of opioids (including heroin) but can also result from the use of diuretics, antidepressants and many others.

Because various diet-related issues can also cause constipation, it can be a side-effect of the abuse of many other substances, if such abuse has an impact on an individual’s eating habits, especially the regularity and quality of food intake.

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What Are the Symptoms of Constipation?

Constipation is a symptom itself, as discussed above. It manifests in the form of a pronounced difficulty defecating, which can lead to various levels of discomfort including serious abdominal pain; intense straining whilst attempting to defecate can cause visible damage to the anus.

How Is Constipation Treated?

Although some very serious cases of constipation require immediate invasive treatment, most are treated through improving the patient’s diet, increasing their hydration, and, if necessary, administering laxatives. Enemas can be administered if required, while manual disimpaction (using the hands to remove impacted stool) is also an option. Meanwhile, if constipation has resulted from substance abuse, addressing that condition is a priority.

How Is Constipation Diagnosed?

Constipation is very easy to identify, as those suffering from it typically present abdominal discomfort and have not been able to move their bowels for much longer than usual ( usually three or fewer successful bowel movements a week) or may have been able to defecate but only producing very small, hard stools similar to those passed by rabbits.

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If you are suffering from an addiction, regardless of whether or not it may have constipation as a symptom, only you can take the first step in addressing that addiction by acknowledging it and reaching out for help.

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You may feel that your life is dominated by your addiction, but the path to recovery begins with a single step, and you can take that step today by calling your GP and/or an addiction specialist. Take back control of your life, and begin the journey back to happiness.

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Across the UK there are now many highly capable facilities and organisations treating people suffering from addictions. If you are ready to ask for help, you could become one of those people: speak with your GP and/or an addiction specialist today to discuss treatment options which may be open to you.

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