Guide to constipation relief in different life phases and how acupressure can help in dealing with it

Constipation causes much discomfort and irritability by hindering the normal bodily functions of food assimilation and excretion. This guide helps you with natural remedies especially stimulating effective acupressure points to get relief from constipation.

Constipation is characterized by passage of dry and hard feces for less than thrice a week. This is a more common problem in aged women and men, in pregnant women, post surgery, taking painkillers, such as opioid and in multiple sclerosis.

Acupressure in constipation relief

Acupressure in constipation relief

Acupressure is a form of holistic approach towards healing and involves stimulating different points located at various places throughout the body. Acupressure is found to be an effective method for treating constipation, providing instant yet long-term relief.

Six points spread across the body are linked to the digestive system and stimulating these points for a measured period of time, regularly, has profound benefits for even the chronically constipated. These points are located on the palms, legs, elbows, below the knees and below the belly button.

Locating the effective acupressure points is the key to successful treatment outcome. The stimulation of the pressure points should be done with utmost care. One should keep note of the pressure exerted and the duration while applying this technique.

6 Effective acupressure points to get relief from constipation: 

1.      The point on the palms

The point on the palmsYou will find one of the effective pressure points to get relief from constipation located at the mount created when the thumb and the index finger are joined together on both the palms. It should be stimulated using slow circular movements of the thumb and the index finger for 30 seconds, 3 to 4 times, twice a day.

The point can also be stimulated by gentle tapping of the point, or with the knuckles. Stimulating this point causes contractions of the walls of the stomach thus facilitating bowel movement. Continuous stimulation of this point has a long term benefit for constipated individuals.

Pregnant women are strictly advised to refrain from stimulating this point as it causes contractions increasing the chances of an early labor. For such cases, it is recommended that the advice of the consulting gynecologist is sought for alternative options to relieve constipation.

2.      The point on the legs, above the ankle bone

The point on the legsOne of the effective pressure points to get relief from constipation is located on the inner side of both the legs just above the ankle bone. The point should be stimulated using circular motions of the thumb and index finger, with the help of knuckles or by gentle tapping motions. The stimulation should be limited to 10 to 15 seconds 3 to 4 times, twice a day for optimum results.

On pressing this point, the digestive system is stimulated and performs its functions in a better way thus, providing long term benefits for those constipated. The stimulation of this point on the legs has also proved to be helpful to those suffering from chronic constipation.

Pregnant women should, however, refrain from stimulating this point for relief from constipation as it can have adverse effects. Consulting a gynecologist for alternative options to relieve constipation is recommended.

3.      The point on the legs, below the knees

The point on the legs, below the kneesThis point is situated one inch below the knees, on the outer side of the shin bone. To check whether you have located the point check by lifting your legs, if the muscles on the point flex when the leg is raised, then you have found the accurate point.

The point should be stimulated using circular motions of the thumb and index finger, with the help of knuckles or by gentle tapping motions. The point should be stimulated for approximately 10 to 15 seconds 3 to 4 times, twice a day to benefit from this procedure.

The stimulation of this point aids digestion and relieves constipation. However, the effects are felt only after continuous and regular practice. When followed regularly over a period of time, the stimulation of this point effectively cures constipation. Pregnant women should seek the advice of their consulting gynecologists for alternates to cure constipation.

4.      The point on the elbows

The point on the elbowsThis effective acupressure point to get relief from constipation is situated on both the elbows at the end of the crease that is formed when the hand is bent such that it is perpendicular to the ground. This point should be stimulated using circular motions of the thumb and index finger, which has been found to be most effective in stimulating this point.

However, it can also be stimulated with the help of knuckles or by gentle tapping motions. The point should be stimulated for approximately 20 to 30 seconds 3 to 4 times, twice a day to reap maximum benefits of this procedure. The stimulation of this point helps the stomach to contract, a mechanism necessary for effective digestion and waste removal process.

When this point is stimulated, it immediately relieves constipation. When followed regularly over a period of time, the stimulation of this point on the elbows cures constipation altogether. Pregnant women should seek alternative therapies to cure constipation as the applying of acupressure on certain points can lead to untimely contractions, and can cause harm to the unborn fetus.

5.      The point below the belly-button

The point below the belly-buttonThis point is situated two inches below the belly button and is considered one of the most vital points to be stimulated for those seeking relief from constipation. The stimulation of this point, however, is different from those of the other points. This point should be stimulated using the index, middle and ring finger, by applying pressure only till tightness is felt near the point.

The pressure should be maintained for 30 seconds. The pressure can either be applied through constant pressing or by circular motions with light pressure on the point. The stimulation of this point has profound effects on the overall functioning of the digestive system. It relieves abdominal cramps, relieves constipation and even reduces flatulence. Pregnant ladies are advised against stimulation of this point.

6.      The point below the wrist:

The point below the wristThis effective acupressure point to get relief from constipation is located four-finger width below the wrist. You will feel a hollow area in between the tendons. The point is stimulated by pressing it with fingertips. The pressure should be applied for one minute. Switch to the other arm and do the same.

The specific pressure point not only relieves you from constipation but also helps in treating stomach upset, motion sickness, nausea, headache, carpal tunnel syndrome, angina, asthma and tightness of chest.

Other natural remedies for constipation relief

Other natural remedies for constipation relief

  1. Fiber:

flax seed

Fibers help in softening and easy passage of stools. You should include whole grains, vegetables, wheat bran, brown rice, fruits like prunes and figs, ground flax seeds and fiber supplements such as Metamucil in your daily diet. Along with fibers, it is essential to drink plenty of water to avoid constipation and gas problems.

  1. Fluids:

Drink plenty of fluids as they provide easy bowel movements. Avoid consumption of dehydrating drinks such as alcohols, coffee and cola.

  1. Stimulant Laxatives:

aloe

Natural herbs such as senna, buckthorn, aloe and rhubarb help in facilitating easy bowel movement. However, prolonged use of these laxatives causes lack of bowel functioning on their own. This leads to irregular heart rhythms and kidney or liver malfunctioning.

  1. Biofeedback:

This therapy is particularly useful for constipation due to pelvic floor dysfunction where pelvic floor muscles fail to function properly. It has several causative factors such as obesity, post childbirth and even an enlarged prostate gland. Biofeedback lays emphasis on better co-ordination of muscles to get rid of the waste matter.

  1. Probiotics:

Probiotics

These microbes, that are natural inhabitants of the digestive tract, help in reducing the growth of harmful bacteria, improve the working of immune system, improve the mucosal lining of the digestive tract and facilitate the production of Vitamin K.

  1. Magnesium:

Magnesium deficiency is also one of the reasons causing constipation. You should include green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains in your diet as they contain adequate amount of magnesium. Magnesium helps in normal functioning of the muscles.

Natural remedies for constipation during pregnancy

If you are pregnant then constipation is one of the common symptom of the same. You will witness it mostly during the later trimester. If not handled properly it can lead to hardening of stool, cracking of anal skin and bleeding from the rectum. But drugstore options are never recommendable during pregnancy due to their adverse side effect. So, home remedies are the best alternatives for expecting mothers like you. They are immensely effective and devoid of any side effects.

Roughage

Roughage

Consuming foods that are rich in dietary fibers or roughage is recommended if you wish to get rid of constipation permanently. Such foods help in digesting what you eat and add bulk to your stool. Therefore, your daily platter must comprise of fresh vegetables, fruits, etc.

Water

It is extremely important that you drink sufficient water during pregnancy. It not only hydrates your body but also softens your stool. Thus, constipation is treated effectively. So, ensure that your daily intake of water is at least 1.5 liters per day.

Avoid consuming diuretic drinks

Avoid-consuming-diuretic-drinks

Pregnancy is the time that prompts you to limit the consumption of drinks that are diuretic in nature. These drinks compel your system to pass more urine. Consequently, it causes dehydration of the body. Hence, if you suffer from constipation your condition gets further worsened by virtue of these drinks. So, avoid drinks like tea, coffee, carbonated drinks and alcohol as much as you can when you are expecting.

Herbal Remedies

Herbal cures have been popular since ages for treating a host of ailments. Thus, you can also find herbal remedies for constipation during pregnancy.

Ginger

Ginger

Ginger works wonders in relieving constipation. Ginger also aids in digestion, neutralizes acidity and relieves you from bloating. So, consume ginger in any form, be it raw or shredded strands or ginger ale or ginger tea to overcome constipation.

Dates

These dark red juicy fruits also help in curing constipation during pregnancy. They are rich in dietary fibers and natural irons. So, a few dates per day will be great cure for constipation during pregnancy. They also will supply fresh blood to your body.

Mint

Mint

Mint works wonders in relieving accumulated gas inside the stomach, aids in digestion and cures constipation during pregnancy. If you are a patient of chronic constipation it might get worsened due to pregnancy. Mint is one of the best herbal remedies you should opt for in such situations. You can consume the same in the form of mint water or mint tea. It will give you instant relief.

Pelvic relaxation

Practice pelvic relaxation every time you go to the toilet for cleaning your bowel. This natural method is a great measure for regularizing bowel movement. Exhale slowly while sitting on the toilet seat and allow your pelvic muscles to relax. You can further bend your knees and put your feet on the rim of the commode. Always grab on to a hand support during the process to prevent accidental fall. This encourages more relaxation of the pelvic floor. Pelvic floor relaxation works wonders in curing prenatal constipation.

Reflexology

Reflexology

This is a technique you can adopt at home in order to get rid of constipation. To begin with, massage the arches of your feet gently with your palms. Carry on the massage with circular strokes in clockwise direction for about five minutes. Alternatively, you can also place two plastic water bottles in between the arches of your feet. Roll them upward and downward as you sit leisurely. These parts of the body connect with the digestive system. So, stimulating them will aid in digestion and you will never have prenatal constipation.

Aromatherapy

Massage your baby bump everyday during bath time. This is a home remedy that is extremely effective in normalizing bowel movement. You can make this massage more beneficial by using aromatherapy oils like orange, lime, grapefruit, bergamot, etc. These aromatherapy have additional benefits too other than curing constipation. Some of the benefits are rejuvenating your senses, minimizing morning sickness, curbing the typical vomiting tendency during pregnancy, etc.

Constipation relief in children through home remedies

Constipation can be an uncomfortable and painful experience for children. It usually happens due to lack of nutrition, imbalanced diet, lack of water in the body, improper toilet training, etc. However, parents should not be too worried, as this condition in children can be easily and effectively treated using some natural home remedies. Check out some of these home remedies that could help your child get rid of constipation.

Honey and Sugar:

Honey and Sugar

When your child has an empty stomach in the morning, you can give him/her a glass of milk that includes 1-2 tablespoons of honey or sugar. This is probably one of the best treatments for a constipated stomach.

Castor oil:

This laxative is commonly used to treat constipation in small children. If a baby has severe constipation, his/her rectum can be introduced with a betel leaf dipped in castor oil. Older children can be directly given a teaspoon of castor oil that is mixed in a glass of milk.

Vegetables:

Vegetables

Are your kids having enough fiber? Some of the green vegetables suitable for your children are turnips, carrots, cabbages, beet, pumpkin, spinach and French beans.

Relaxing bath:

A good home remedy to support the regular bowel movement is to give a warm relaxing bath to the child. You should add about 2 tablespoons of baking soda to the warm water and let your child relax in the bath for 10-15 minutes.

Unrefined foods:

lentil

Some unrefined food items are the best treatments for children who face constipation. These foods help in softening the stool. Some items that can be given to the child include bran cereals, bran muffins, lentils, whole grain cereals, honey, etc.

Triphala:

It is a great herbal medication for the treatment of constipation. Three magical herbs are mixed to create this medicine called Triphala. You should take a teaspoon of Triphala to mix in water or milk that needs be given to the child before going to bed. This would prove to be quite effective in clearing his stomach.

Flaxseed:

Flaxseeds

Flaxseed remedy is one of the best for treating as well as preventing constipation in children. You should take a small quantity of flaxseed and boil it in water. Give this water to your child or alternatively sprinkle a teaspoon of flaxseed on the meal the child is going to have.

Dr Prem Jagyasi and Team

Dr Prem is an award winning strategic leader, renowned author, publisher and highly acclaimed global speaker. Aside from publishing a bevy of life improvement guides, Dr Prem runs a network of 50 niche websites that attracts millions of readers across the globe. Thus far, Dr Prem has traveled to more than 40 countries, addressed numerous international conferences and offered his expert training and consultancy services to more than 150 international organizations. He also owns and leads a web services and technology business, supervised and managed by his eminent team. Dr Prem further takes great delight in travel photography.

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