Constipation vs. Diareah?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1775
   Posted 1/26/2009 9:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Why is it that some get Constipation and others have Diareah or multiple BM's a day? My daughter has never really had Diareah, but does get Constipated. Even when well she may go once every other day. 
Does being prone to one or the other give any insight into the disease?
My daughter was diagnosed Feb. 19/07, (13 yrs. old at time of diagnosis), with Crohn's of the Terminal Illium. Initially, 9 weeks of Prednisone, currently taking 2000mgs of Pentasa.

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 1/26/2009 9:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Causes of constipation may differ depending on the person. For instance, while constipation may be a result from a poor diet in one person, it could be the result of taking medication in another.

Poor Diet – A diet low in fiber and water consumption can lead to constipation. Eating too many dairy products such as milk and cheese, and foods high in starch such as potatoes, white pasta, white bread, and rice, can trigger constipation.

Medication – If you are taking medications to treat other Crohn’s symptoms, or another condition, one of the side effects of these drugs could be constipation, taking too many laxatives can actually have the opposite effect and result in constipation.

Stricture – Sometimes the cause of constipation in Crohn’s disease is due to a slight obstruction in the small intestine called a stricture. A stricture is an abnormal narrowing that occurs in a natural passage in the body, in the case of Crohn’s the small or large intestine. Strictures result from ulcerations and scar tissue. The obstruction in the intestine slows down digestion and creates problems – constipation.

Up your insoluble fiber intake – There are two different types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Although both sources of fiber should be apart of your diet, if you are constipated, insoluble fiber is more beneficial to you because it helps to move food through your intestines. It is this fiber that encourages regular bowel movements. Excellent sources of insoluble fiber include dark green leafy vegetables, fruit skins, corn bran, and whole-wheat products.

When there is enough fiber in your diet, stools should be soft and passed without problem. If you have a problem naturally increasing your fiber intake, talk to your doctor about fiber supplements.

Drink plenty of water – Most people don’t drink enough water and this can lead to chronic dehydration and cause constipation. You need to make sure you are well hydrated by drinking the recommended eight, 8oz. glasses of water daily, and avoid caffeinated drinks that lead to dehydration.

Exercise – Exercise improves your overall health, reduces the risk of constipation and can even prevent it. By improving your body’s circulation and increasing your energy, you are providing your body with the power it needs to digest food.

Drugs – if your constipation is severe (lasts for more than 2 weeks) it’s time to consult your doctor about taking laxatives. Although these meds are available without prescription, it’s a good idea to seek the opinion of your doctor first. You should never abuse laxatives, as this will only cause further complications with your colon.

When you prevent and effectively treat constipation, you will avoid ugly complications that can arise from chronic constipation such as hemorrhoids and anal fissures.

My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it! LOL :)

Rider Fan
Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1445
   Posted 1/26/2009 9:13 PM (GMT -7)   
I've never had much d either. I don't think it means anything, besides that the colon is absorbing the water normally I guess.
Dx'ed in 1999. No surgeries.

Current meds: 25mg Methotrexate. 12.5mg prednisone. Udo's Choice Probiotics (30 billion).

Tried SCD, didn't work, now avoiding gluten and dairy.

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 94
   Posted 1/27/2009 3:53 AM (GMT -7)   
I think it just depends on the person. Some people with CD have diarrhea and others constipation, and it's both "normal" for CD, although a lot of people are surprised to hear that. I've had both. It's never been about the food I eat or drink or anything like that.

A friend of mine told me that that's how her CD started but that it got worse with time and now it's just diarrhea.

It's not good to have constipation but it's a whole lot easier than having diarrhea. What do you think?
21 yr. old with crohn colitis. Diagnosed in March 2004. No surgeries so far.

Post Edited (caroline_r) : 1/27/2009 2:16:52 PM (GMT-7)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 80
   Posted 1/27/2009 7:20 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm with you Caroline. I've actually been back and forth with mine. With me there seems to be no rhyme or reason
age 41,diagnosed with CD in 11/07, Rx Pentasa 4000mg and Remicade.

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 1/27/2009 7:28 AM (GMT -7)   
I have almost always suffered with more C than D. Right now I think mine is because I live on a low residue diet all the time. Not alot of fiber in it. But I have the stricturing type of Crohns, and think this is pretty common with that type of Crohns. I take a stool softner every night to help soften things up so I have a BM everyday. If I don't I hurt really bad, just missing one day.
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Anxiety/Panic Forum
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 33 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, and Calcium and Xanax as needed. Resections in 2002 and 2005. Also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Osteoarthritis and Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission.
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*
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