ZocdocAnswersWhat causes constipation upon waking?

Question

What causes constipation upon waking?

Why would I be constipated in the mornings when I wake up? It usually will resolve itself by later on in the day after I'm awake and moving around for a while, but in the first few hours of the morning, it just seems almost impossible for me to have a bowel movement.

Answer

Constipation is one of the most common reasons that people seek medical advise. The doctors that will be well qualified to discuss this issue with you include your primary care doctor and your gastroenterologist. Constipation is defined as being unable to pass stools every few days or passing stools that are very hard or that require a lot of straining to pass. If this does not apply to you, as it seems not to, then the problem is not truly constipation. Each person's body develops a daily rhythm, and it is not uncommon for a person to defecate at the same time very day. It sounds like your body has settled into a rhythm where it defecates in the afternoons. This is totally normal! If you prefer to defecate in the mornings, you will have to change your rhythm. One way to do this is to make sure you eat a good breakfast everyday. The food will stimulate your system and may cause a bowel movement to happen. Drinking a cup of strong coffee every morning may have a similar effect. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular concerns will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your primary care doctor might be indicated.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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