How long does it take stool softeners to work
- Weekend Wellness: Talk to doctor before taking stool softener for chronic constipation
- By the way, doctor: Is it okay to take a stool softener long-term?
Weekend Wellness: Talk to doctor before taking stool softener for chronic constipation
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Stool softeners are over-the-counter OTC products used to soften hard stools or to prevent constipation. Before you decide to try a stool softener, it's a good idea to know how they work and how safe they are. You'll also find it helpful to know when you would choose to use them instead of taking a laxative. Stool softeners work by increasing the amount moisture to your stools, which makes them softer and easier to pass. This then sets you up for a more comfortable bowel movement , one that should not require straining. The primary active ingredient in OTC stool softener products is docusate. The medicine is thought to work locally within your large intestine.
Jump to content. Bowel movements should be soft and formed. They should pass easily like toothpaste flowing out of a tube. The standard time frame for normal bowel movement BM frequency ranges from as many as three bowel movements per day to as few as three bowel movements per week. This is a wide range.
ANSWER: At this time, no research has examined the specific long-term side effects of taking a stool softener every day. While the risks associated with taking this kind of over-the-counter medication daily are not likely to be significant, it would be a good idea to talk with your doctor about your symptoms. Although uncommon, an underlying health condition could be part of the problem. Constipation typically is defined as having fewer than three bowel movements a week or other symptoms e. Chronic constipation refers to these symptoms when they last for several weeks or longer. Constipation is a common problem, and there are many types of laxatives available to help treat it.
By the way, doctor: Is it okay to take a stool softener long-term?
Constipation can be extremely uncomfortable, and it can affect anyone due to many different causes. There are also many types of over-the-counter laxatives, so choosing the right one may seem a little tricky. How does each type work?