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Doctor insights on: Do Stool Softeners Make You Poop

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How can stool softener make you need to poop more often or just more?

How can stool softener make you need to poop more often or just more?

OTC aids to stool: Stool sofeners (colace) moisten & soften hard, dry stools whereas fiber supplements (metamucil) buks stool due to both water-holding & increased bacterial mass due to fiber digestion. Both products assume normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. Change in bowels is a "red flag", like weight loss or blood in stool, that needs evaluation if persistent. ...Read more

Bowel Movement (Definition)

Expulsion of fecal material, food residue and bactrial residue, ...Read more


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I often have hard time pooping n most times I have some blood when I wipe n sometimes in toilet. I've tried taking stool softener but always end upsick?

I often have hard time pooping n most times I have some blood when I wipe n sometimes in toilet. I've tried taking stool softener but always end upsick?

Try significantly: Increasing the fiber in your diet.You may need to see your doctor to help regulate this. Continued straining can result in the development of hemorrhoids and other problems. ...Read more

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I have had issues pooping for over a month. I go once a week maybe two if im lucky? I have stool softener and I don't have fruit and vegatables around?

I have had issues pooping for over a month. I go once a week maybe two if im lucky? I have stool softener and I don't have fruit and vegatables around?

Water & fiber help: Make yourself eat fiber and drink 6-10 8 oz glasses of water a day (that's 3-5 16 oz bottles of water a day). Why don't you have veggies and fruit around? They are the best source of fiber and really help constipation if you take, say 3 fruits and 4 veggies a day for a few weeks. Some meds, chronic inactivity can cause constipation or make it last longer so get busy walking & exercising more too! ...Read more

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My 5yr oh hold her poop till she throws up. Then she still hold it. She has accidents constantly says it hurts. Can I give her stool softener everyday?

My 5yr oh hold her poop till she throws up. Then she still hold it. She has accidents constantly says it hurts. Can I give her stool softener everyday?

Please see doctor: I think the simple answer is a yes, 'but answer. This sounds like a significant situation that must be fully studied. I am sure your pediatrician can help and even recommend a specialist for pediatric gastroenterology. Please do not just give your daughter stool softeners without a full evaluation and diagnosis of the underlying problem. ...Read more

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To much in my anus to poop. Will a stool softener or enema help?

To much in my anus to poop. Will a stool softener or enema help?

Enema over softener: Enema will likely help more than a softener, since the stool is already in the rectum. Sometimes, digital disimpaction is needed - using your finger to help remove stool/start the bowel movement. Be careful though. ...Read more

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I'm very constipated I've used enama and I took stool softener a hour ago, when shpuld I try to poop again?

I'm very constipated I've used enama and I took stool softener a hour ago, when shpuld I try to poop again?

YouHaveAFullHouse?: A Wise Man once said "There's a hole at the bottom and it will all come out eventually." In your young case I bet that might be true. I think you should be a little more patient. Bottom line, though, is if you are really uncomfortable (like horrible cramps, etc)then go to an Urgent Care for a Royal Flush (call first to talk with them about it). Otherwise, it may take some time with a stool softener. ...Read more

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How long will a Dulcolax stool softener work? Gave one to my son at 7pm last night and he is STILL pooping. Do they usually last that long?

How long will a Dulcolax stool softener work? Gave one to my son at 7pm last night and he is STILL pooping. Do they usually last that long?

StartedSomething: The half-life (time it takes for the dose given to decrease by half) for dulcolax is 8 hrs. You gave your son a stimulant laxative to initiate bowel movements after a period of constipation, it stands to reason that they are going to continue to be moving until the lowest effective dose is gone. ...Read more

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I am 16 and I am pooping nothing but light to dark red mucus. Only has been one day and I took stool softeners that night. Is it anything serious?

I am 16 and I am pooping nothing but light to dark red mucus. Only has been one day and I took stool softeners that night. Is it anything serious?

Red Stool: Anytime you have mucous and red stools you must be see a physician as this could represent blood in your stools and that is a danger sign. ...Read more

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Dr put me on cetiphil (spelling) stool softener for my constipation issues. Always full of poop and never feel empty bowels. Stool is ways hard. Why?

Fluids, prune ; diet: Drink at least 8 glasses of filtered water daily. Eat lenty of fruits ; veg. Prune ; prune juice will help. Add 25-30 gm of fiber/day.
Stool must not be hard. ...Read more

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I have a hard poop that I can't get out, it's too big to come thru and painful what should I do? I've tried dorcolax suppositories and stool softener. I'm 3 weeks postpartum today.

I have a hard poop that I can't get out, it's too big to come thru and painful what should I do? I've tried dorcolax suppositories and stool softener. I'm 3 weeks postpartum today.

Impacted...: If you have a big, hard, stool that won't pass out of your body, you are "impacted". Treatment for the condition starts with manual removal of the impacted stool. This involves inserting a finger into the rectum to break-up the impacted stool and remove it piece by piece. You might want to try a mineral oil enema first. It will soften the stool so that you might be able to pass it. ...Read more

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I always seem to have trouble pooping and it is nearly impossible to get a bowel movement without a stool softener/lax. Healthier alternatives?

I always seem to have trouble pooping and it is nearly impossible to get a bowel movement without a stool softener/lax. Healthier alternatives?

Constipation: Slowly start increasing your fiber intake to a goal of 25-30 gms/day. Increase water intake as well. Eat foods high in fiber like veggies, fruits with the skin on, salads, cereals like Bran (in all its varieties)/Wheaties/Cheerios/Wheatabix, etc. Also 100% whole wheat bread/pasta/noodles, oatmeal. ...Read more

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My 6 yr old nephew has always had hard time pooping. He would not take stool softener is there anything else I can try? The last time I went to dr with him (a few years ago) we were told his stomach was a little distended but dr had seen worse, given sup

My 6 yr old nephew has always had hard time pooping. He would not take stool softener is there anything else I can try? The last time I went to dr with him (a few years ago) we were told his stomach was a little distended but dr had seen worse, given sup

Constipation: Constipation is very common in young preschool and school-aged children. It can be caused by any number of things such as: withholding, change in diet, changes in routine, family history, medications, cows' milk allergy, and occasionally another medical problems. Often, children with long-standing constipation will have leakage of small amounts of stool around the large, hard ball of stool sitting in their rectum. Since passing this large stool can be painful, many kids will continue to withhold causing worsening constipation. The key to fixing constipation is to figure out why it happened in the first place, disrupt the cycle of holding with medications and/or treatments and make permanent healthy dietary changes. Often, this can involve a number of treatments, so the best thing is to contact your nephew's doctor and discuss the constipation. They may suggest dietary changes, glycerine suppositories, and laxative use for a few weeks depending on the severity of the constipation. Extreme cases may require enemas or even hospitalization. Definitely, the sooner you have him seen and treated, the better!

in the meantime, make sure he is drinking plenty of fluids and eating a high fiber diet (plenty of fruits, veggies and high fiber cereals). Limit foods such as white flour, sugar, meat and cheese that do not have much fiber. Try to have daily 5-10 minute "potty times" 2-3 times a day at the same time to get him on a schedule. Praise small victories and do not punish accidents - that can just make the withholding worse.

Luckily, for most kids, constipation is a temporary thing and with proper treatment, they will be just fine. Good luck! ...Read more

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I poop like once or twice a week It's been like this my whole life, but I always have lower back pain? I try fiber and stool softener nothing works.

I poop like once or twice a week It's been like this my whole life, but I always have lower back pain? I try fiber and stool softener nothing works.

Nerve pain: Your pain with a bowel movement is the stool putting pressure on your bowel in the area before the end that has nerve compression with referral of pain to your back. Referred pain with bowel movements is not uncommon as long as the patient has had it for a long time and the discomfort is not changing over time. It is difficult to make this go away except for with time. ...Read more

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Burns when pooping Like passing glass. Fine after passing. Stool softeners, fiber, hydrocortisone suppositories provide marginal relief. What is this?

Burns when pooping Like passing glass. Fine after passing. Stool softeners, fiber, hydrocortisone suppositories provide marginal relief. What is this?

Anal fissure: Anal fissures, thrombosed hemorrhoids, and perianal abscesses can cause those symptoms. Best to have your doctor look at it to get you the right treatment. ...Read more

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I took miralax prep for colonoscopy tomorrow. Also 4 stool softeners as directed along with the broth jello diet. Started the cleanse at 4 p.m. still?

I took miralax prep for colonoscopy tomorrow. Also 4 stool softeners as directed along with the broth jello diet. Started the cleanse at 4 p.m. still?

May take awhile: Hi BShetty,
The bowel prep for a colonoscopy can be very challenging to take. Because the goal is to clear your colon of stool completely, the regimen is very aggressive and you may be having bowel movements almost continuously until it is just clear liquid coming out. Depending on the regimen, you may also experience residual cramping as the effects of the laxative wear off. Hope this helps. ...Read more

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Can kids take doss stool softener?

Yes, but lower dose: Docusate (doss) is safe for children and it has pediatric dosing tables; do not give a child an adult dose. I would check the medication insert or online at doss's site for this to most accurately dose for pediatrics. Otherwise, it is safe for use in children and I have given my daughter pediatric docusate before. I hope this helps! ...Read more

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How long till stool softener works usually?

How long till stool softener works usually?

Usually within1-3 d: Depends on dose and type; usually works within 1-3 days. Check other factors including diet, activity, other meds, other health issues. ...Read more

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Is it okay to take a stool softener every day?

Is it okay to take a stool softener every day?

No: It is not a good idea to use them in the long run. In the short-term, for a few weeks or less, if necessary, they should be tolerated very well. Good luck. ...Read more

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How long till stool softener or stimulant works?

Minimize stimulants: Docusate (per pdr) helps moisten & soften hard, dry stools. It is not true laxative, but facilitates natural defecation, usually within 12 to 72 hours. This is safe & available for children over 2, & assumes normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. Change in bowels is a "red flag", like weight loss or blood in stool, that needs evaluation if persistent. ...Read more

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Is it safe to use a stool softener and a laxative together?

Yes but: Quite a few over the counter (otc) preps contain both elements. As with most otc medications, temporary use to relieve symptoms are usually fine. Habitual or prolonged use is unwise as you maybe masking something more serious. Don't wait till it becomes a serious problem. ...Read more

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I've been constipated for two days, will a stool softener help?

I've been constipated for two days, will a stool softener help?

Maybe, maybe not: Stool softeners generally take 3-4 days to work down into the large intestines and help with constipation. Increasing fluid consumption and trying scheduled emptying can help move things along. A rectal stimulant like a ducolax suppository can aid immediate need. ...Read more

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I tried using an enema just after a stool softener. Is that bad?

I tried using an enema just after a stool softener. Is that bad?

Start simple, but...: First optimize fiber ; h2o intake. Next, docusate helps moisten ; soften hard, dry stools. It is not a true laxative, but facilitates natural defecation, usually within 12 to 72 hours. This is safe ; available for anyone over 2, ;assumes normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. But change in bowels is a "red flag" that needs evaluation if persists. ...Read more

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Which juices and foods can you use as a stool softener/laxative?

Which juices and foods can you use as a stool softener/laxative?

Constipation: Pure fruit juices especially prunes, pears, peaches, etc are good stool softeners. Foods rich in fiber include whole grain cereals with added bran, fruits eaten with their skin, vegetables like cooked beans, lentil, etc. And tree nuts. Increased water intake will fulfill the purpose. ...Read more

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Does a stool softener make me go to the bathroom like a laxative?

Does a stool softener make me go to the bathroom like a laxative?

It is a laxative.: Stool softeners are a type of laxative. There are seven classes of laxatives:
bulk forming - fiber.
Osmotic- magnesium salts, peg.
Stimulant - bisacodyl, castor oil, prunes, senna.
Stool softeners- doss.
Lubricants- mineral oil.
Serotonin agonists.
Chloride channel agents- lubiprostone.

Usually the best treatment for constipation is a variety of agents in low dose. ...Read more

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Do stool softeners like Metamucil work the same way as laxatives?

Do stool softeners like Metamucil work the same way as laxatives?

Neither are laxative: Stool sofeners (colace) moisten & soften hard, dry stools whereas fiber supplements (metamucil) buks stool due to both water-holding & increased bacterial mass due to fiber digestion. Both products assume normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. Change in bowels is a "red flag", like weight loss or blood in stool, that needs evaluation if persistent. ...Read more

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Is genuine phillips stool softener pretty good to take for constipation?

Is genuine phillips stool softener pretty good to take for constipation?

Yes, but: A better way to relieve constipation is to eat high fiber cereal (fiber one or all bran) everyday. ...Read more

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Constipation. I have not had a bm in 3 days. I have tried stool softeners.

Start with OTC: You can start with simple over the counter remedies, such as dulcolax, or senna type products like ex-lax. In addition, you can try MiraLAX (polyethylene glycol) or milk of magnesia. Sometimes mineral oil, mag citrate, or suppositories or even enemas are solutions.
Increasing the fiber and water consumption is also good advice. Prunes or prune juice is also a gentle and effective way.
If it gets severe, see a doctor. ...Read more

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Is Natural Calm a stimulant or stool softener? Will body become dependent?

Is Natural Calm a stimulant or stool softener? Will body become dependent?

Natural Calm,: It appears, is a magnesium supplement--magnesium citrate. A different form of magnesium--magmesium sulfate--is definitely a laxative. Magnesium citrate is promoted as a "stress easer" improving fatigue, low energy, insomnia, muscle tension, spasms, cramps and maybe constipation. As with all supplements, ideal is to get minerals from food. Don't take too much: recommended daily intake is 320-420 mg ...Read more

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I was recently diagnosed with gastritis, is it safe to take a stool softener?

I was recently diagnosed with gastritis, is it safe to take a stool softener?

Stool softner: Hi ~ YES but choose one that is psyllium based like Metamucil and adjust dose to needs. Too much will give you cramps and diarrea. Thanks ...Read more

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What is the fastest way to not be constipated if stool softeners don't work.

Constipation: Fastest way is an enema. Other ways. Magnesium citrate (8 oz) - assuming no kidney disease. Also MiraLAX (polyethylene glycol) in high doses for folks over 12 use 238gms of powdered MiraLAX (polyethylene glycol) in 64 oz of gatorade and drink over 12 hours. Don't eat anything else just clear liquids. That will clean you out very well! ...Read more

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Is there a problem with taking stool softeners every day for an extended period?

Is there a problem with taking stool softeners every day for an extended period?

Stool softeners: Most stool softeners such as colace (docusate sodium) are safe in chronic usage. It is important to remember that you should drink plenty of fluids while using stool softeners. ...Read more

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Does long term use of stool softeners and laxatives cause vitam and mineral imbalances/ deficiencies?

Does long term use of stool softeners and laxatives cause vitam and mineral imbalances/ deficiencies?

Yes: Long term use of harsh laxatives like milk of magnesia (magnesium hydroxide) or castor oil can cause nutritional problems but mainly they cause the colon to become more and more sluggish, causing more laxative use. If you have a problem moving your bowels or you are using laxatives for weight loss you should consult your primary care for advice. Thanks for trusting HealthTap! ...Read more

Dr. Brad Goldenberg
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