Constipation -_-

Hey everyone,

so the title of this discussion pretty much says it all. To be honest it is super embarrassing to even be posting about it but I'm wondering if anyone else is going through this, or if anyone has any much appreciated advice.

So constipation is something I have suffered from for a long time, not sure if it is fibro related or not but my doctor told me IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) is something that is very common with this auto immune disease. Yay, another lovey perk haha! So I'm just wondering if I am the only one that is suffering from this? Is there anything that helps? I try to stay away from gluten because I have an allergy to it and I drink a lot of tea but that doesn't seem to be helping. This is almost a daily battle. Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated. Again, sorry to post about something like this but this is a support group so I figured almost anything is discussable.

Thanks everyone!

Don’t be embarrassed-we are all in this together! Yes, I also have a problem now with constipation. I was diagnosed with IBS & interstitial cystitis along with diverticulitis several years ago. The doc had me on hyoscyamine which worked beautifully until I was diagnosed with FMS in March 2014 & was put on
Cymbalta & tramadol. I try to eat a lot of fiber-whole fruits & plenty of salads to get in the fiber from the raw veggies. Lots of fluids, especially water. I have heard that you can also take magnesium before bedtime & it will work overnight-best to check with your doctor on that one. I will even take a gentle “cleansing” laxative that I get at GNC. I bet there a lot of us out here that suffer from constipation at times, just like you. Because of my medical history, I believe my meds for FMS are what’s causing my new issues with constipation. Hope I’ve been of help! HUGS from Deb

I know hard to talk about. No pun intended. LOL. But... this has been a chronic issue for me for about 15-20 years. Started needing to take something daily beginning mid late 20's and now 44. I have tried everything. Kept trying perscriptions, but even if worked a bit, my body could not tolerate and I would stop due to other side effects (allergic reaction, chemical sensitivity,etc). So I began looking for natural, non-perscription supplements since in my case I ate plenty of fiber and drink lots of water so it was not a diet cause. Anyhow, a cleanse is a good place to start. A gentle one is "Whole Body Cleanse" by enzymatic therapy. A more powerful one is, "Ultimate Cleanse" by Nature's Secret. If that does not jumpstart your system back up...

I took the magnesium that Deb mentioned in both a pure magnesium powder and caplet form at different times. The powder is just magnesium without additives, which I like that, but it can cause you to run to the bathroom. Need to test to get right dose for you, but I thought I had mine down yet still had surprise emergencies. (start no more than 1/4 teaspoon in 8 oz. water or juice.) I found the Phillip's magnesium caplets worked without the emergency running. Recently recommended that to my aunt and she says it is working for her. There are also a variety of senna tablets and teas I have tried, but my body eventually adapted to the tablets and then I had to increase. Senna is a natural laxative, but still has addictive effects on your system. I do keep the tea in my house for when daily supps are not having effect and many days have passed and I'm uncomfortable. The senna tea I use comes in regular and extra strength. It's called, "Ballerina tea" and I've found it also under the name "California tea". Note if I take this I do it in the evening and do not leave my house the next day until I empty. It seems to take aprox 10-12 hours to go thru my system, but my family has used it and only 4-6 hours for some of them. Everyone I tell and who tries this for occassional needs says they are grateful I warned them it comes on strong and not to take unless they will be at home. So, I have tried a lot of different products and herbs over the years. Those are some of the standouts, but I have a chronic issues with hypomotility so I typically need more punch than most slow people.

Maybe start with something like FiberCon 1-3 times a day or the Phillips caplets mentioned as those are easy to get at your local store. If you don't mind the chemical, Miralax works really well (but gave me allergic skin reaction so I had to stop it). Also, pickup some peppermint tea as this is soothing to the gut and helps digestion. Ginger is good for the gut too, but not sure about helping constipation. Even though I prefer organic and this is not straight peppermint, I actually like Trader Joe's Mint Melange blend hot tea (they have straight peppermint too). I drink this in the evening sometimes after a heavy meal.

I could go on forever with all I have tried, but I will skip to the now. After having to keep switching between doses and senna vs magnesium and other things when body got used to each after a while, I researched specifically for a non-chemical, natural product that worked to stimulate colon peristalsis naturally, which is lacking with hypomotility disorder. Some constipation cases people just need a stool softener to retain water in the colon for easy passage and Colace (or generic thereof) does the trick; however, in my case I retain water fine, but require a stimulant of sorts for the colon muscle to work properly. Don't know if this is related to fibromyalgia or not, but I am big on finding each person's cause and treating the cause, not the symptom. The product I now take is a combo of all natural herbs and is gluten free, but I have to order online as I've never yet seen it in local health stores by me. I found my right dose and rarely have emergency.

For you, if the standard non-stimulant, Colace stool softener (or, magnesium - natural stool softener) doesn't work try some of the others, but unless have a specific known condition like mine I would never recommend someone take a daily laxative because your body will become dependant on it and then you have to increase over time to get the same affect. Your body will stop functioning on it's own naturally and you will end up on laxatives for life (which unfortunately will be my case), which is not good. I don't know your specific situation so I aimed to help you with over-the-counter, non-perscription product ideas from one extreme to the next in hopes you start with something mild, yet have alternate options to try if mild does not work for you.

This was an extensive reply, but if even one thing I said sticks with you (or someone else who needed feedback from your post too) and proves to be helpful then it was worth it. Please let me know. I'm interested in your progress.

Regards, Julie

I like all the suggestions and will try some of them when magnesium so longer works for me. I take about 400mg of magnesium a day. I started with 300mg. I also take 99mg of potassium each day. It helps with muscle twitching and cramping. I need something for constipation because the amount of pills I take each day dries me out. I also had diverticulitis in '04 that led to surgery and a colostomy bag. Definitely no fun, so don't let it get out of hand.

I’ve had IBS from Fibromyalgia for 16 years. My baseline is constipation, alternating on a flare with abdominal cramps and diarrhea. The latter only happens now every other month or so, usually precipitated by stress.
To lessen my constipation, I follow this regime:

  1. Eat 2 dried prunes every morning
  2. Take 2 fiber gummies (total of 4gm fiber) at bedtime.
  3. Track my fiber intake on MFP (My Fitness Pal) with goal of 20-25 gm minimum per day. In addition to fruits and vegetables, I eat high-fiber cereals and breads, which help a lot.

Thank you everyone for your very helpful suggestions! I am making a little laundry list now of things to try out. I am a coffee and tea drinker which are both natural diarrhetics, but it definitely isn't cutting it anymore.

Thanks for the advice everyone!

blessings and prayers

My dr put me on 24 milligram twice a day and it does help some. He also just put me on a shot that I give myself in the stomach that should help as well as beyond the teaser to make sure that I’m regular I don’t remember the name of the shot I know it’s a very expensive expensive 1but as long as you’re drafter fills out the proper form insurance should cover it. I’m totally interested to see how when I start that next week if it helps.