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Constipation

Popular Constipation Treatments BrandsStimulant LaxativesBulk-Forming High Fibre LaxativesStool SoftenersSuppositories and EnemasConstipation Natural TreatmentsConstipation FAQs


Constipation is defined as having a bowel movement fewer than three times per week. The stools are usually hard, dry, small in size, and thus difficult to eliminate. Some people who are constipated or suffer from IBS find it painful to have a bowel movement and often experience straining, bloating, and the sensation of a full bowel. Fortunately there are many types of products for treatment of constipation;

Stimulant laxatives stimulate the bowel and this helps to push stools along.

Bulk-forming laxatives use fibre to add bulk to stools and thus make them easier to pass. Fibre is the most natural method of relieving constipation and is thus ideal for those who tend to avoid medication. Because fibre is not medicine-based, fibre-based products are very safe and suitable for long-term use.

Stool softening (osmotic) laxatives work to soften stools by preventing the bowel from re-absorbing too much water from the stools. This means that the stools are more watery and thus softer and easier to pass.

Suppositories and enemas work directly within the bowel. In the case of suppositories, these deliver a dose of medication directly into the bowel. Enemas help flush out the bowel and are useful for cleaning and clearing the bowel before medical examinations.

Natural treatments for constipation are often based on senna and soluble fibre, both important for maintaining and regaining digestive health.

Popular Constipation Treatments Brands

A. Vogel
A. Vogel
Dulcolax
Dulcolax
Senokot
Senokot

Stimulant Laxatives

Phillips' Milk of Magnesia 100ml
Phillips' Milk of Magnesia 100ml: Phillips' Milk of Magnesia 100ml contains magnesium hydroxide which helps to prevent the bowels from re-absorbing water in the stools and to relieve constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.45 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Tablets 10
Dulcolax Tablets 10: Dulcolax Tablets 10 are proven and reliable dual action laxative relief from constipation.   More >>>
Price: £1.19 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Tablets 20
Dulcolax Tablets 20: Dulcolax Tablets 20 are a proven and predictable dual action stimulant laxative for constipation.   More >>>
Price: £1.99 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Tablets 60
Dulcolax Tablets 60: Dulcolax Tablets 60 are proven to be predictable and reliable laxative relief for constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.45 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Tablets 100
Dulcolax Tablets 100: Dulcolax Tablets 100 are a reliable laxative treatment for constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.95 (incl VAT)
 
Dulclolax Pico Liquid 100ml
Dulclolax Pico Liquid 100ml: Dulclolax Pico Liquid 100ml gives gentle relief from constipation.   More >>>
Price: £2.75 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Pico Liquid 300ml
Dulcolax Pico Liquid 300ml: Dulclolax Pico Liquid 300ml provide gentle relief from constipation.   More >>>
Price: £6.19 (incl VAT)
 
Docusate Sodium Adult-50mg/5ml Oral Solution 300ml
Docusate Sodium Adult-50mg/5ml Oral Solution 300ml: Effective relief from constipation.   More >>>
Price: £10.54 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Tablets 20
Senokot Tablets 20: Senokot tablets provide effective relief of constipation with natural senna in tablet form.
  More >>>
Price: £2.29 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Tablets 60
Senokot Tablets 60: Senokot tablets containing natural senna, provide effective relief from constipation.   More >>>
Price: £5.55 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Tablets 100
Senokot Tablets 100: Senokot tablets provide effective relief from constipation with natural senna.   More >>>
Price: £7.30 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Syrup 150ml
Senokot Syrup 150ml: Senokot syrup provides effective relief of occasional or non-persistent constipation with natural senna.   More >>>
Price: £5.25 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Max Strength Tablets 24
Senokot Max Strength Tablets 24: Senokot Max Strength Tablets provide gentle, effective constipation relief with double the strength of the original Senokot.   More >>>
Price: £4.25 (incl VAT)
 
Senokot Dual Relief Tablets 20
Senokot Dual Relief Tablets 20: Senokot Dual Relief Tablets 20 are a herbal remedy traditionally used for the relief of occasional constipation and feelings of bloatedness.   More >>>
Price: £3.79 (incl VAT)
 
A.Vogel Linoforce Granules 70g
A.Vogel Linoforce Granules 70g: A.Vogel Linoforce Granules 70g helps to relieve the symptoms of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £6.55 (incl VAT) (Buy any 3 or more A. Vogel products and save 5%)
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A. Vogel Linoforce 300g
A. Vogel Linoforce 300g: A. Vogel Linoforce 300g is made entirely from natural and herbal ingredients such as linseed, frangula and senna and acts as an effective laxative for constipation.   More >>>
Price: £10.25 (incl VAT) (Buy any 3 or more A. Vogel products and save 5%)
 
Ex-Lax Senna 12
Ex-Lax Senna 12: Ex-Lax Senna 12 is a scored chocolate bar of tablets containing senna in each for the relief of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £2.31 (incl VAT)
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Ex-Lax Senna 24
Ex-Lax Senna 24: Ex-Lax Senna 24 is tablets in a scored chocolate bar containing senna in each for the relief of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £3.43 (incl VAT)
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Ex-Lax Senna 48
Ex-Lax Senna 48: Ex-Lax Senna 48 is a scored chocolate bar of tablets containing senna in each that relieves constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.95 (incl VAT)
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Califig California Syrup of Figs 55ml
Califig California Syrup of Figs 55ml: Califig California Syrup of Figs 55ml is made from figs and relieves constipation naturally.   More >>>
Price: £5.40 (incl VAT)
 
Califig California Syrup of Figs 110ml
Califig California Syrup of Figs 110ml: Califig California Syrup of Figs 110ml is a natural fruit laxative to relieve constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.19 (incl VAT) (Buy 3 or more for £3.99 each)
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Numark Constipation Relief Tablets 20
Numark Constipation Relief Tablets 20: Numark Constipation Relief Tablets 20 offer effective overnight relief of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £1.45 (incl VAT)
 
Bisacodyl Laxative Tablets 5mg 60
Bisacodyl Laxative Tablets 5mg 60: Bisacodyl Laxative Tablets 5mg 60 for effective short term relief of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £3.09 (incl VAT)
 
Docusol Paediatric Solution 300ml
Docusol Paediatric Solution 300ml: Docusol Paediatric Solution 300ml helps to relieve constipation in children.   More >>>
Price: £7.75 (incl VAT)
 
Docusol Paediatric Solution 6 months+ 125ml
Docusol Paediatric Solution 6 months+ 125ml: Docusol Paediatric Solution 6 months+ 125ml for effective relief of constipation in children 6 months+.   More >>>
Price: £5.29 (incl VAT)
 
Docusol Adult Solution 300ml
Docusol Adult Solution 300ml: Docusol Adult Solution 300ml helps to treat and prevent constipation in adults and the elderly   More >>>
Price: £7.69 (incl VAT)
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Lactugal Lactulose Solution 500ml
Lactugal Lactulose Solution 500ml:   More >>>
Price: £6.29 (incl VAT)
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Bulk-Forming High Fibre Laxatives

Senokot Hi Fibre Orange Sachets 10
Senokot Hi Fibre Orange Sachets 10: Senokot Hi Fibre Orange Sachets 10 provides relief from constipation and helps with the maintenance of regularity in the long term.   More >>>
Price: £2.99 (incl VAT)
 
Fybogel Natural Flavour 30
Fybogel Natural Flavour 30: Fybogel Natural Flavour 30 is a high fibre drink that gently relieves constipation and maintains regularity.   More >>>
Price: £3.70 (incl VAT)
 
Fybogel Orange Flavour 30
Fybogel Orange Flavour 30: Fybogel Orange Flavour 30 is a high fibre drink that gently relieves constipation and maintains regularity.   More >>>
Price: £3.70 (incl VAT)
 
Fybogel Lemon Flavour 30
Fybogel Lemon Flavour 30: Fybogel Lemon Flavour 30 is a high fibre drink that gently relieves constipation and maintains regularity.   More >>>
Price: £3.70 (incl VAT)
 
Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 12
Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 12: Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 12 are made from a traditional recipe with figs, senna and tamarinds selected for their gentle action on constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.79 (incl VAT)
 
Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 24
Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 24: Ortisan Fruits and Fibre Cubes 24 are formulated with natural ingredients such as figs, senna and tamarinds that gently act on constipation.   More >>>
Price: £7.99 (incl VAT)
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Normacol Natural High Fibre 60
Normacol Natural High Fibre 60: Normacol Natural High Fibre 60 act by providing dietary fibre to assist in the relief of constipation.
  More >>>
Price: £8.25 (incl VAT)
 
Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 60
Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 60: Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 60 contain frangula, a natural traditional herbal laxative to help with constipation.   More >>>
Price: £9.19 (incl VAT)
 
Normacol Natural High Fibre 500g
Normacol Natural High Fibre 500g: Normacol Natural High Fibre 500g are granules containing sterculia that provide fibre to assist with constipation.   More >>>
Price: £9.99 (incl VAT)
 
Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 500g
Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 500g: Normacol Plus Natural Fibre 500g granules contain sterculia and frangula to naturally help constipation.   More >>>
Price: £10.95 (incl VAT)
 
Movicol Liquid Orange Flavour Oral Solution 500ml: Movicol Liquid Orange Flavour Oral Solution 500ml for the treatment of chronic constipation.   More >>>
Price: £7.19 (incl VAT)
 
Movicol Ready To Take Oral Solution Sachet 30: ready to take directly from the sachet for the relief of constipation and fecal impaction.   More >>>
Price: £ (incl VAT)
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Stool Softeners

Duphalac Solution 200ml
Duphalac Solution 200ml: Duphalac Solution 200ml treats constipation using lactulose which helps to hydrate and soften stools.   More >>>
Price: £3.15 (incl VAT) (Buy 3 or more for £2.84 each)
 
DulcoEase Capsules 30
DulcoEase Capsules 30: DulcoEase Capsules 30 can help sufferers of constipation by softening stools and making evacuating less painful during bouts of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.29 (incl VAT)
 
Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 20
Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 20: Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 20 are orange-flavoured single dose sachets used to treat chronic long-term constipation and to soften stools.   More >>>
Price: £4.99 (incl VAT)
 
Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 30
Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 30: Laxido Orange Sugar-Free 30 are single dose orange-flavoured sachets for treating chronic long-term constipation and for softening stools.   More >>>
Price: £6.49 (incl VAT)
 
Bells Epsom Salts 200g
Bells Epsom Salts 200g: Bells Epsom Salts 200g is ideal for relief of occasional constipation.   More >>>
Price: £1.40 (incl VAT)
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Bells Liquid Paraffin B.P. 150ml
Bells Liquid Paraffin B.P. 150ml: Bells Liquid Paraffin B.P. 150ml offers temporary relief of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £2.10 (incl VAT)
 

Suppositories and Enemas

Dulcolax Suppositories 12
Dulcolax Suppositories 12: Dulcolax Suppositories 12 provides fast relief from constipation in a suppository.   More >>>
Price: £3.25 (incl VAT)
 
Dulcolax Suppositiories for Children 5
Dulcolax Suppositiories for Children 5: Dulcolax Suppositories for Children 5 provide fast relief from constipation for children in a suppository.   More >>>
Price: £1.69 (incl VAT)
 
Glycerin Suppositories for Adults 12
Glycerin Suppositories for Adults 12: Glycerin Suppositories for Adults 12 give relief of occasional constipation in adults.   More >>>
Price: £1.79 (incl VAT)
 
Care Glycerin Suppositories for Infants 12
Care Glycerin Suppositories for Infants 12: Care Glycerin Suppositories for Infants 12 for infant use offering the relief of occasional constipation.   More >>>
Price: £1.55 (incl VAT)
 
Micralax Micro-Enema 12
Micralax Micro-Enema 12: Micralax Micro-Enema 12 contains 450mg sodium citrate, 45mg sodium alkylsulphoacetate and glycerol and works by softening the stools to relieve constipation and clear the bowel.   More >>>
Price: £7.55 (incl VAT)
 
Micolette Micro-Enema 12
Micolette Micro-Enema 12: Micolette Micro-Enema 12 contains sodium lauryl sulphoacetate 45mg, sodium citrate 450mg and glycerol 625mg and is for the treatment of acute or chronic constipation.   More >>>
Price: £5.99 (incl VAT)
 
Norgalax Micro-Enemas 6
Norgalax Micro-Enemas 6: Norgalax Micro-Enemas 6 provide relief from constipation and clear the bowel before some medical examinations.   More >>>
Price: £38.29 (incl VAT)
 
Relaxit Microenemas 12
Relaxit Microenemas 12: Relaxit Microenemas 12 is used in the treatment of constipation and to soften hardened stools.   More >>>
Price: £6.99 (incl VAT)
 
Glycerol Suppositories BP for Children 12
Glycerol Suppositories BP for Children 12: Glycerol Suppositories BP for Children 12 is a laxative for short-term treatment of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £2.40 (incl VAT)
 
Lecicarbon A 10 suppositories.
Lecicarbon A 10 suppositories.: 10 rectal suppositories for the relief of chronic constipation.   More >>>
Price: £11.59 (incl VAT)
 
Lecicarbon C 10 Suppositories.
Lecicarbon C 10 Suppositories.: 10 suppositories which release carbon dioxide to relieve the symptoms of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £10.89 (incl VAT)
 
Intrapharm Lactulose 10g/15ml Oral Solution Sachets
Intrapharm Lactulose 10g/15ml Oral Solution Sachets: 10 sachets of oral solution which help relieve the symptoms of constipation.   More >>>
Price: £4.50 (incl VAT)
 

Constipation Natural Treatments

Senna

Senna  
For centuries senna has traditionally been used for its laxative qualities.   More >>>
 

Soluble Fibre

Soluble Fibre  
Soluble fibre products are an easy-to-use form of fibre.   More >>>

Artichoke

Artichoke  
Artichoke is thought to lower blood cholesterol levels, help maintain a healthy liver, gallbladder and bowel and aid digestion.   More >>>
 

Peppermint

Peppermint  
Peppermint has been known for centuries as a soothing digestive aid, working on the gastro-intestinal tract, helping to soothe the muscles.   More >>>

Constipation FAQs

What is constipation?
Constipation is the infrequent passage of stools - typically fewer than three times per week. The stools tend to be difficult to pass because they are hard and dry.

Why do stools become hard?
Stools are formed along the intestine, and start off quite watery. The colon is designed to re-absorb some of the water from the stools. However, sometimes it absorbs too much and this can lead to hard, dry stools and constipation. At the extreme end of the constipation spectrum is fecal impaction, a condition in which stools harden in the rectum and prevents the passage of any stool.

Why do I become constipated in the first place?
You can become constipated for a number of reasons. It often happens through not drinking enough water or eating enough fibre. Constipation can also happen when the digestive process is temporarily upset. This can happen, for example, after excessive drinking or when taking antibiotics that interfere with the digestive bacteria in the gut. Some long-term sufferers have problems due to an overall bacterial imbalance in the gut.

Is constipation related to any other conditions?
Constipation can also alternate with diarrhoea, whereby the colon does not re-absorb enough water. This pattern is more commonly considered as part of the condition known as IBS. A soluble fibre supplement can help to alleviate both conditions by balancing the fluid and fibre levels in the intestine.

What treatments are available for constipation?
  • Stimulant laxatives, such as senna and bisacodol, increase the speed at which the contents move through the bowel. These can come in oral or suppository form. Senna is found in products such as Senokot, whereas bisacodyl is found in products such as Dulcolax tablets or Dulcolax suppositories.
  • Osmotic laxatives such as lactulose and magnesium hydroxide work by preventing too much water from being drawn away from the bowel, and thus softening the stools. Lactulose is found in Duphalac; magnesium hydroxide is contained in mil-par and milk of magnesia.
  • Docusate sodium, found in products such as Dulcoease, is a stool-softening agent which works by a surfactant action, breaking up stools and allowing them to be passed.
  • Glycerin suppositories have a direct softening effect.
  • Bulk-forming laxatives include bran, isphagula husk, methylcellulose and sterculia. These work by adding bulk to the stools, thus making them softer and easier to pass. This type of product is often recommended for patients with haemorrhoids or IBS. Because these products are just fibre rather than medicine, they are quite safe and suitable for long-term use.

    How can I choose between treatments?
    Stimulant laxatives are powerful because they directly activate the bowel. However, they are not for those who prefer to avoid medication. Osmotic laxatives are a little milder, whereas bulk-forming laxatives are based around fibre and provide the most natural form of relief from constipation. In addition, soluble fibre can be used in conjunction with any of the other treatments. Fibre is very safe and suitable for long-term use.

    What does Express Chemist recommend for constipation?
    In the short term, constipation can be treated with stimulant laxatives such as Dulcolax, Senokot or Ex-Lax Senna. Fibre-based treatments such as Fybogel will also help. In the long term, stimulant laxatives should be avoided, and hydrating treatments such as Laxido are far safer. Again, fibre-based treatments such as Fybogel are always helpful in treating constipation in the long term.

    What is the advantage of suppositories over tablets?
    Suppositories get straight to work in the bowel, bypassing the need to digest tablets. This is great for people with poor digestion or other gastric problems besides constipation. However, many people find tablets far more pleasant than inserting suppositories, and suppositories can be inserted incorrectly.

    What can I do to prevent constipation?
    You can help treat constipation by increasing your fluid intake and eating food that is high in fibre such as figs or prunes. In addition, exercise and movement can all help to get the digestive system moving. You can also take extra fibre in addition to your meals. Some herbal products are also believed to help digestion, including artichoke.html, peppermint or artichoke. Fibre can help where an imbalance of bacteria in the intestine is suspected.

    Why is it bad to be constipated?
    The extra strain on the rectum caused when passing dry stools can lead to haemorrhoids. In addition, if stools are left in the bowel for long periods of time, toxins from the stools can re-enter the body. This can, in turn, lead to conditions such as psoriasis, spots and acne, liver damage or even bowel cancer.
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