- Set aside a regular time each day for bowel movements. The best time is often within one hour after breakfast. Don’t try to hurry. Sit for at least 10 minutes, whether or not a bowel movement occurs.
- Drinking hot water, tea or coffee may help stimulate the bowels.
- If constipation persists for three or four days, use a non–prescription, disposable enema for temporary relief.
- For occasional constipation, you may use stool softeners, mild non–prescription laxatives or enemas. Don’t use laxatives or enemas regularly as this can cause dependency. Avoid harsh laxatives and cathartics, such as Epsom salts. The best laxatives are bulk–formers, such as bran, isabgol etc.
- Exercise and good physical fitness helps to maintain healthy bowel patterns.
- Good food habits also help.
Drink at least eight glasses of water each day. Include bulk foods, such as bran and raw fruits and vegetables, in your diet. Avoid refined cereals and bread, pastries and sugar.