Constipation Specialist

Dan Wool, NMD -  - Naturopathic Physician & Gastrointestinal Specialist

Dan Wool, NMD

Naturopathic Physician & Gastrointestinal Specialist located in Tempe, AZ & Scottsdale, AZ

Everyone has different bathroom habits, making it hard to determine exactly how many people struggle with constipation. However, the best estimates say that 24% of adults have chronic constipation. No one should suffer from frequent constipation when they can get exceptional naturopathic care from Dan Wool, NMD, in Scottsdale and Tempe, Arizona. Dr. Dan Wool offers personalized treatment with a wide range of natural therapies that effectively relieve constipation without causing side effects. To schedule a free in-person or telehealth consultation, call the nearest office or use the online booking feature today.

Constipation Q&A

What defines constipation?

The general definition of constipation is having fewer than three bowel movements a week, yet everyone has different bathroom habits. You may have a bowel movement daily, while others may only have a few each week. For this reason, constipation means having fewer bowel movements than you normally do or not having any. 

Symptoms of constipation include:

  • Hard, dry stools
  • Pain during bowel movements
  • Difficulty having a bowel movement
  • Inability to fully empty your bowels

Many people experience abdominal bloating and pain when constipated.

What causes constipation?

Lack of dietary fiber and fluids represents one of the causes of constipation. You need fiber and fluids to ensure stools stay soft, bulky, and move through your gastrointestinal tract.

Some medications, such as pain-relieving opiates, cause constipation. Additionally, underlying health conditions can lead to the problem, including:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Underactive thyroid gland
  • High blood calcium
  • Narrowed colon
  • Diverticulitis
  • Diabetes

Of these conditions, IBS is one of the most common causes of constipation.

What is irritable bowel syndrome?

IBS refers to a chronic intestinal disease that causes a group of symptoms. The symptoms include bloating and abdominal pain together with changes in the frequency, appearance, or texture of your stools. 

In most cases, IBS doesn't have an identifiable physical cause in your small or large intestine. It may develop due to:

  • Food sensitivities and allergies
  • Changes in gut bacteria
  • An earlier gut infection
  • Changes in intestinal muscle movement
  • Changes in communication between the gut and brain

Anxiety and depression don't cause IBS, but they can make your symptoms worse.

What are the different types of IBS?

There are several subtypes of IBS:

IBS with constipation (IBS-C)

If you have IBS-C, your bloating and pain occur together with constipation.

IBS with diarrhea (IBS-D)

IBS-D means that you have bloating and pain along with loose or more frequent stools.

IBS with mixed bowel habits (IBS-M)

This type of IBS means you have symptoms of IBS-C and IBS-D.

How are constipation and IBS treated?

The naturopathic approach to treating constipation and IBS begins by identifying the root cause of your condition. This step is essential, considering the complex nature of your gut, microbiome, and its connection to your body.

Then Dr. Wool creates a treatment plan that may include options such as:

  • Dietary changes (for sensitivities)
  • Specialized diet (such as a low FODMAP diet)
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Magnesium supplements
  • Dietary fiber
  • Herbal medicines
  • Probiotic foods and beverages
  • Hydrotherapy
  • IV nutrition

If you need help with constipation or IBS, call Dr. Dan Wool or book an appointment online today.