As a pregnant woman, your body is going through lots of changes and it can be overwhelming to manage all the physical symptoms. One common issue is constipation, which is especially common during pregnancy due to the changes in hormones and to the pressure from the growing baby. Stool softener medications can help to ease this discomfort and make it easier to go to the bathroom. However, it’s important to be aware of what medications are safe to use during pregnancy and know the potential risks associated with them. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the specifics of stool softener for pregnant women, including what it is, the potential risks, and the types of stool softeners available.
Is it safe to take stool softeners to treat pregnancy constipation?Answer From Myra Wick, M.D., Ph.D.
Stool softeners are generally considered safe during pregnancy.
Constipation during pregnancy, which is characterized by fewer than three bowel movements per week, can be uncomfortable. Constipation is common in pregnancy. Stool softeners, like docusate calcium (Surfak) and sodium docusate (Colace), moisten the stool and ease passage. Due to the fact that these products’ active ingredient is only minimally absorbed by the body, they are unlikely to harm an unborn child.
Your health care provider might also recommend a laxative. Because they aren’t absorbed by the body, bulk-forming laxatives like psyllium (Metamucil, Konsyl, etc.) and polycarbophil (FiberCon, Equalactin, etc.) are frequently regarded as safe to use during pregnancy. Other laxatives that are approved for use during pregnancy include stimulants like bisacodyl (Ducodyl), saline laxatives like magnesium hydroxide (Phillips Milk of Magnesia, Dulcolax, and others) or magnesium citrate, and lactulose (Cholac, Constilac, and others).
Many laxatives and stool softeners are available without a prescription. To treat pregnancy constipation, consult your doctor first before taking any medication, including stool softeners and other laxatives.
Remember that lifestyle modifications can frequently prevent constipation during pregnancy. For example:
Tell your doctor about the constipation if you take iron supplements. Despite the fact that iron is a crucial nutrient for pregnant women, too much of it can lead to constipation. If you take an iron supplement, you might need to take a stool softener.
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To relieve constipation during pregnancy, do not take cod liver oil as it may interfere with the absorption of some vitamins and minerals.
If none of these remedies are successful, a stronger medication may be considered. Before taking any stronger medications, you should always speak with your doctor. In addition, make sure you do not overuse laxatives. You may become more likely to use them again if this results in diarrhea and fluid loss.
Your doctor might advise taking a mild laxative if none of these natural remedies seem to be effective. Milk of Magnesia is one mild laxative that is thought to be safe to use throughout pregnancy. Additionally, your physician might advise using a bulk-producing supplement like Metamucil. Finally, to relieve constipation, your doctor may advise using a stool softener that contains docusate.
It is preferable to make an effort to prevent constipation from happening in the first place by consuming more high-fiber foods, drinking more water, and engaging in regular exercise.
Prior to choosing to take any medication, it is always preferable to try the natural methods of easing constipation. Please click this link for more details on constipation and remedies for it.
Before taking any medications during your pregnancy, consult your doctor. As your baby’s first trimester is a critical period for development, exercise extra caution during this time.
When used as directed by the package, these over-the-counter laxatives have no known negative effects on a developing fetus. Contact your doctor if you have questions about the safety of any other medications.
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