Pregnancy is a time where your body is going through some epic changes. The geography you once knew is history and this cute little alien parasite is making itself right at home. Things that were once easy may not be so easy. You may have to start paying extra close attention to certain things before it gets way out of hand. What am I talking about here?
That’s right. We’re about to have an honest conversation about pooping: the good times and the bad times.
Pregnancy constipation. We know it. We (don’t) love it. It happens to almost all of us. We’ve all been the one sitting on the toilet just wishing you could poop. Like please, please, pretty please, just come out. I don’t physically have room for a jam-packed bowel and a baby to be in there all at once. So, here is a list of things that can help when all the berries and spinach and prunes are not doing a thing.
Keep in mind that I am not a medical professional and you should definitely talk to your doctor if you are having some serious blockage issues. Also, I’m not getting anything in return for talking about the following items. They are just things that worked (or didn’t work) for me and are now in a handy list for other mamas and mamas-to-be who may be miserably stopped up.
-A Stool softener (like Colace).
The directions say take 2-4 tablets at night before bed and that should get things moving in the next 12-24 hours. Personal experience…. 2 did pretty much nothing for me so naturally, I was like “Two was a bust! Let’s go big!!” and downed 4 tablets before bed.
Fast-forward to about 10am the following day. Let’s set the stage. I am at work. Small office. Thin walls. Everyone’s at their desks which are conveniently placed right across from the bathrooms which are a single room per potty. So not a whole lot of privacy. Okay action.
10am and I’m sitting at my desk and feel “the urge”. And I don’t mean the relieving urge of things moving towards the exit. I mean the panic-inducing urge of a waterfall crashing through your bowels. The one that makes you RUN, cheeks clenched, to the closest toilet and barricade yourself inside.
After an eventful 30 minutes and an admonishing text from my nurse sister (“FOUR??? You never take four!!”), things subsided, and I was able to return to my desk all while carefully not making eye contact with any of my coworkers.
DON’T TAKE FOUR.
-An osmotic laxative (like Miralax).
When the exit ramp is backed up and traffic is at a standstill, dump a capful in your morning coffee and drink away. People see the word “laxative” and instantly think “poop my brains out”. With osmotic laxatives, this is not the case! They are very minimally absorbed by your digestive tract and just follow the intestinal course through you, pulling water into your guts and making everything a bit softer and looser.
Since this laxative works by pulling water into your poo, you need to make sure you drink plenty of water with this one.
No crazy stories here. We’ve always gotten along great!
-Milk of Magnesia.
This is my go-to, I-need-an-intervention solution. For those times when all-of-a-sudden you realize you haven’t pooped in a week and you’ve been eating like a starved dog. Yeah, this’ll fix you up. It can also f*** you up… Enter a friend of mine, B. B had been complaining of stomach cramps and constipation and was just miserable. We were advised (by a medical professional) to go get some milk of magnesia (MoM) from the pharmacy and plan a night in while it did it’s thing. So, B and I head to the store to get supplies. This store is about a half a mile from B’s place of residence. Easy drive.
We get there and go find the MoM and read the label. It says it should produce a bowel movement in a few hours to a day or so. Great. B buys the bottle and we head back to the car where B proceeds to drink a dose. Takes a few hours to work, right? B lives less than a half-mile away right?
This is the night when parking at B’s place all-of-a-sudden becomes a problem. Like someone was throwing a crazy party and invited everyone and their brother. Our five-minute excursion to the pharmacy turns into a 30-minute hunt for parking followed by a 20-minute walk back to B’s.
I think it’s safe to say that that 20-minute walk might’ve been the longest and hardest 20 minutes of B’s life.
Moral of the story: if you opt for milk of magnesia, TAKE IT WHEN YOU ARE ALREADY HOME AND BY A TOILET.
-A squatty potty.
Otherwise known as the best invention of all time. This thing is magic shaped into a little plastic stool. Basically, it’s a platform that fits around the base of your toilet. When the Browns are heading to the Superbowl, bust the squatty potty out, and put your feet on it so you are in a supported squatting position, booty hole over the toilet, and let loose. This puts you into a better position for laying logs, and GOOD NIGHT, you will be shocked, and be honest, slightly impressed at what comes out of you. This, in my humble opinion, should be a bathroom staple for everyone at any time. Pregnant, postpartum, none of the above. Its great for everyone.
Awkward conversation? Yes. Affects everyone? Yes. Entertaining to hear someone else’s poop nightmare? I hope so. Best of luck, backed-up mamas!