Bowel movements are not typically a big part of conversations among adults, but the vast majority of us have experienced constipation, or a lack of bowel movements. The definition of constipation is unique for everyone, what is normal for you probably is not be normal for anyone else in your household. You could ask around and compare if you are really curious, but our daily "output" varies with our activities, what we've eaten or not eaten, and our emotional state to some degree.
Stress can throw a normal routine of bowel movements off and cause lots of pain and discomfort in the process. Stress can include emotional stress, such as nursing school exam week (there, I admitted it!) or problems at home or work. Stress can also be physical, such as the stress that your body undergoes when sick or tired and overworked.
Surgery is both physically stressful and emotionally stressful for most people, as it is hard to find a patient who doesn't worry before having surgery. In addition to the stresses of surgery, there are quite a few reasons why constipation attacks unsuspecting surgery patients quite frequently.
Sometimes, we (ok, ME) don't even know we are constipated because it has never happened before and consider reporting to the ER for an evaluation for appendicitis. It can hurt. It isn't the first thing people think of when they have abdominal discomfort. It can be a serious pain in the butt, if you will pardon the expression.
Find out why Constipation After Surgery is common, why you should fill the prescription for stool softeners that you've never needed in the past, and what you can do to Prevent Constipation before it becomes a problem.