“No one talks about the fact that constipation is one of the worst complications of having a baby” – Jennifer Wider, M.D., a women’s health expert in Fairfield, Connecticut
Pregnant women and new moms often ignore constipation, with some mistakenly thinking that their discomfort will simply go away. It is important for both pregnant and new mothers to know that though they may be overwhelmed with the responsibilities brought by having a new baby, it is critical that they take care of their health too. Constipation is harder to treat when it gets worse. Fortunately, there are a few things mommies can do to relieve this uncomfortable feeling. Do try these tips that will hopefully make you feel better than ever.
Stock up on fiber
Truth be known, foods that are high in fiber prevent and relieve constipation. Per Dr. Wider’s advice, an average woman should have at least 25g of fiber daily while pregnant women should have 30g. Prunes is a good example of a fruit high in fiber (1 cup has 12g of fiber). It also acts as a natural laxative. You can also rely on beans, whole grains, and vegetables to up your fiber intake.
Drink plenty of water
It’s recommended that a human body needs at least 8- 10 glasses of water per day to ensure proper hydration and to prevent gas and bloating. When you’re breastfeeding, you need to have more water intake- 10 to 12 glasses a day, according to Christy Dibble, D.O., director of the Center for Women’s Gastrointestinal Health at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, in Providence.
People who are used to a sedentary lifestyle easily gets constipated compared to those who actively work out. Go get your body moving through consistent exercise. Moms are usually deprived of sleep from all the household chores and tasks motherhood brings. Try to take a brisk walk while pushing your baby’s stroller or do 15 minutes of stretching every morning while everyone is asleep.
Set a regular schedule
The large intestines prefer a consistent eating schedule. It is therefore highly encouraged that you take note of the time of day you feel the urge to defecate. Sip a hot tea or coffee. Feel free to snack on high-fiber food to help you poop with ease and comfort.
Deep breathing is not only good for the lungs, it also stimulates the pelvic muscle. As such, when you aim to have a successful bowel movement, don’t be in a hurry. Instead, do some deep breathing while you’re in the toilet to internally help your body push your poop out. More so, slow breathing helps you feel relaxed. Whenever you’re anxious, your body feels the same way thus interrupting what could have been a smooth elimination process. Breathe in a relaxed manner so you can evacuate in a similar fashion.