My mother, 95, had been constipated for weeks, even with peri-colace, miralax, milk of mag. Now fecally incontinent - like mud. Advice?

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We stopped giving her any stool softeners/laxatives 5 days ago. She eats a very simple diet, whole foods, nothing processed but she's still having soft stools like mud - and fecally incontinent for the first time. She drinks 4 glasses of water each day + herbal non-caf teas. We're both frustrated and I'm not sure if medical intervention is required. Meals these days consistent of simple breakfast: scrambled egg, toast, herbal tea; lunch: yogurt w/ apple or soup w/crackers for lunch; dinner: baked fish or chicken, potato, veggie
I'm at a loss as to what and why this is happening.

Answers 1 to 9 of 9
Have you tried acidolphilus?
Acidophilus is a great suggestion - I hadn't thought of it because mom has trouble swallowing. However, I will look into a form that she can take.
Thanks for your advice, Grannycissy, I appreciate your reply.
I found a childrens powdered version at Fred Meyer/Kroegers. My FiL just started it on Tuesday so we will see what happens for him. (He is on Dsyphagia level 1 diet, Everything is pureed and ALL meds are crushed to a powder or are liquid. He can swallow fine, his esphogous has a kink in it.)

Also, my sister has a recipe for a prune smoothie that we are also trying: about 4-6 ounces of prune juice (unsweetened), a pat or less of butter (yes butter, to "grease the skids") and a dose of Milk of Magnesia (we started with 1/2 teaspoon, now up to 1 teaspoon). Warm the prune juice and butter to a comfortable drinking temp and add the MoM. Hope for a happy bathroom visit later.

So far, the results for both are not spectacular, but at 95 yrs of age, these things take time and we are moving caustiously on the dosages.

For the runs, try the BRATT diet (banana, rice, apple sauce, tea, toast); along with acidophilus -- yogurt -- to help balance intestinal bacteria.

Years ago I had the nasty habit of laying down right after eating big meals. On top of that, I was always on the go and there was no set schedule; so there was no time for "regularity." The more Colace, Miralax, and milk of magnesia I used the worse the constipation became. Instead of keeping track of the food intake, getting enough rest, enough exercise, and learning to relax I relied on short-term, over-the-counter treatments that the body defended itself from after a while; not realizing that these same medications conflicted with the absorption of other medications I was taking at the time. My body was completely out of whack and I felt "poisoned."

Do speak with her doctor, but go on line and search for home remedies. The last thing she needs is another chemical in her system. Good luck my friend.

-- ED

Thank you very much. I appreciate the feedback and advice!

My mother finally had a bowel movement on day 15. She is a former yoga teacher and always had good eating, exercise and bathroom habits. She is in quite good health for 95 and remarkably is not on any meds . She drinks plenty of water, wholesome meals, fruit and veggies. In fact, she always finishes her plate... Unfortunately, she is no longer ambulatory and sits all day, at 95 the plumbing is going. Her doctor said that past age 75 Fleets are not recommended and can do more harm then good. So now, we are just giving her a Dulcolax suppository every 3rd day and this alone is finally is helping. In all other respects, she's doing well and appears to still enjoy being "here." I appreciate you taking the time to respond. Here's to good health and community - we're all connected. Kay
I have tried everything for my 89-year mother who alternates between constipation and then diarrhea if we give too much. Acidopholis not helping at all. She gets lots of fluids. Hospice nurses say to give Milk of Mag but is there anything out there that is more consistent? I have tried EVERYTHING for her.
If the problem is diahrrea which my incontinent MIL had quite frequently, the thing that best worked for her was immodium AD right after the movement. Worked like a charm and also the BRAT diet mentioned above. With the demenia it is difficult to tell them they can't eat certain foods as they don't understand. Just tried to keep what she couldn't eat at the time out of sight.

Everyone's body is different. Blueberries prove to be a great laxative.
upon rising in a.m. after breakfast, I always have between 1 to 3 bowl movements, if I skip a day, feel plugged up. For these short bouts of not having a movement, is MOM better or is Prune juice better?
Can't say this is the best answer. Yet Fiber-3, which is just a blend of about equal parts of flaxseed meal and acacia fiber, plus about a 1/4 a part of insulin, which helps the probiotics in the gut survive better; seems to help irregularity. It blends with drinks well and eventually thickens them. Cooking it in oatmeal takes a significant amount of added water.

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