Pregnant woman sitting with an apple

Pregnancy and constipation

Pregnancy is a time of great change, when your body is constantly adjusting to the new life growing inside you. Unfortunately, constipation is common during pregnancy and can leave you feeling heavy and uncomfortable.

Why constipation occurs during pregnancy

Often there are several things happening all at the same time that can contribute to constipation during your pregnancy. Fluctuating hormones, as well as, a growing belly, can upset your digestive system and result in discomfort. Also, if you’re taking an additional iron supplement during your pregnancy, then constipation can be a side effect of that too.

Post-baby constipation

It’s not uncommon for hormonal changes to continue disrupting your digestive system for a few months post-pregnancy. Lingering pain from childbirth might make bowel movements difficult. You might also find yourself delaying trips to the toilet just to have more uninterrupted time with your baby while you breastfeed. But not giving in to the urge when it’s there can contribute to constipation and should be avoided where possible.

Relieving constipation in pregnancy

Focusing on areas such as your diet or exercise can ease constipation during pregnancy. However, small changes don’t guarantee an instant remedy to your digestive woes. You can also help relieve your constipation with over-the-counter medications but should consult a doctor before using these products while pregnant or breast-feeding.

Pregnant woman chopping vegetables

Preventing pregnancy constipation

See tips to avoid the discomfort of constipation during pregnancy

Pregnant woman stretching

Preventing pregnancy constipation: Exercise

Exercise your way to better digestion during pregnancy