How Physical Therapy Can Relieve Medication-Induced Constipation

Have you ever felt uncomfortable due to tummy troubles?

Sometimes, certain medications we take for different reasons can lead to constipation. But don’t worry, there’s a solution that might surprise you: physical therapy! Physical therapy isn’t just for sore muscles or recovering from injuries. It can also help with medication-induced constipation. In this blog, we’ll dive into what constipation is, how medications can cause it, and how physical therapy can provide relief.

So, let’s get started on the journey to a happier tummy!

How medication can cause constipation

How physical therapy can help relieve constipation caused by medication.

Understanding Constipation

Before we jump into how physical therapy can help, let’s understand what constipation is. Constipation happens when it’s difficult to pass stool, and you might feel bloated, uncomfortable, and even a little bit yucky. It’s like a traffic jam in your intestines! Sometimes, constipation can be caused by the medicines we take. Generally, normal bowel movements are classified anywhere from 3 times per day to every three days. Getting back to that 3-day mark consistently puts you in the constipation category, along with feeling the need for straining or not getting an empty sensation.

Medications and Constipation

You might wonder, “How can medicines make my tummy unhappy?” Well, some medications can slow down the movement of your intestines, making it harder for poop to move through. Pain relievers, some antidepressants, and even certain supplements can be the culprits. When you’re taking these medications, your intestines might feel like they’re taking a nap, causing constipation to show up.

Physical Therapy to the Rescue

Now, you might be thinking, “How can physical therapy help my tummy?” Well, physical therapists aren’t just for sprained ankles; they can work their magic on your belly too!

Here’s how physical therapy can make your tummy troubles disappear.

Exercise for Your Intestines

Just like you do exercises to keep your body fit, your intestines need some workout! Physical therapists can guide you through special exercises that gently massage your tummy. These movements help stimulate your intestines and encourage them to move poop along. It’s like giving your intestines a little nudge to wake them up from their nap!

Relaxation Techniques

Imagine your intestines as a team of hardworking muscles. Sometimes, they can get a bit too tense, making it difficult for poop to flow smoothly. Physical therapists can teach you relaxation techniques that help calm those muscles down. When your intestines are relaxed, it’s easier for poop to move through, solving your constipation woes.

Breathing Exercises

Did you know that the way you breathe can affect your tummy? It’s true! Deep breathing exercises can help stimulate your intestines and improve their movement. Physical therapists can show you how to take slow, deep breaths that will give your intestines the boost they need to get things moving.

Posture Pointers

Believe it or not, your posture plays a role in how well your intestines work. Physical therapists can help you find the best sitting or lying positions that promote healthy digestion. Sometimes, a simple change in how you sit or stand can make a big difference in keeping your tummy happy.

Stay Active

Staying active isn’t just good for your muscles; it’s good for your intestines too! Physical therapists can suggest activities that keep your body moving, which in turn keeps your intestines moving as well. Remember, a happy body often leads to a happy tummy!

Manual Techniques

Visceral Manipulation is another highly trained technique that we use to promote health and healing for your internal organs. Just as a body massage loosens up muscles, tendons, and other connective tissues, visceral manipulation can remove restrictions present in the layer of tissue and fluid that surrounds and connects your organs.

Dealing with constipation caused by medications can be a real downer. But now you know that physical therapy isn’t just about fixing injuries – it can also come to the rescue when your tummy feels troubled. With gentle exercises, relaxation techniques, breathing exercises, posture pointers, staying active, and manual techniques, physical therapists can help your intestines get back on track.

Remember, if you ever find yourself facing medication-induced constipation, don’t hesitate to reach out to the experts at Apex. With the right guidance, you can wave goodbye to tummy troubles and say hello to a more comfortable and happier you.

So keep moving, keep breathing, and keep that tummy smiling!

Ready to start therapy? 

If you’re ready to start therapy to get your life back, contact us today and book your first session.

Written by:

Kayla Heger, PT, DPT, WCS

Doctor of Physical Therapy, Women’s Health Certified Specialist

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