The inability to pass stool for days or weeks can cause intense stomach pain and pressure, as well as bloating, a feeling of fullness and more. You can become constipated from a number of factors, such as poor diet, physical inactivity, medication use, pregnancy and many other reasons. However, there are many over-the-counter laxatives that are effective to treat occasional constipation.
When To Use Liquid Laxatives
Before resorting to laxatives, you will want to verify that you actually are constipated and that you have tried getting your bowels to move with other, more natural methods. Constipation means that you have fewer bowel movements than are normal for you, and any bowel movements that you may have involve hard and dry stools that are difficult to pass. To try and relieve constipation naturally, try to increase your fluid intake, exercise and eat fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables and oats.
If these lifestyle changes don't improve your constipation situation, it's time to try a laxative.
Types of Liquid Laxatives
Most forms of laxatives are taken orally, such as osmotics (Miralax, Milk of Magnesia) that work in 1 to 3 days, bulk formers (Metamucil, Benefiber) that work in 12 to 72 hours, stool softeners (Colace, Surfak) that work gradually, and oral stimulants (Dulcolax, Senokot) that work overnight. However, there are other also stimulant suppositories (Dulcolax, Pedia-Lax) that are inserted rectally and work within minutes to speed up stool movement by stimulating the bowel muscles.
Liquid laxatives are a form of stimulant suppositories and include products such as Pedia-Lax, which uses liquid glycerin to get bowel movements moving. Liquid laxatives are what they say--liquid--instead of a regular capsule suppository. Liquid laxatives require no clenching and no waiting for a capsule to dissolve. This is especially useful for children who need some help having a bowel movement but don't have the bodily control to do a regular suppository.