Lazy bowel syndrome is thought to be a condition that is caused by overuse of laxatives to stimulate bowel movement. The common cause of the use of laxatives, both natural and chemical, is constipation. This is a condition wherein the bowel will not excrete waste, causing a build-up and blockage of the system. Constipation can occur occasionally to many people, and infrequent use of a laxative will not necessarily cause lazy bowel syndrome.
According to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearing House there are several factors that can contribute to constipation. Dietary intake can be a major factor in the function of the bowels. Insufficient intake of certain food types, such as fiber, can prevent the proper evacuation of waste, leading to a blockage of the bowels. An insufficient intake of liquids, especially water, can also contribute to the onset of constipation. The lack of sufficient physical activity may also prevent the bowels from performing properly.
More Serious Causes
According to Jay W. Marks, MD, Irregularities in bowel movement can occur occasionally, but when immediate changes happen it can be a sign of something more serious. Tumors that have developed in the colon or rectum may contribute to what is known as acute constipation. Hyperthyroidism as well as hypothyroidism can contribute to acute constipation. Hormonal imbalances have been reported to cause this condition, as have serious nerve disorder such as Parkinson's disease.
Impaction is a term that is used to describe the blockage of waste material, usually in reference to the rectal area. This condition is a result of constipation and can lead to more serious problems. Straining to pass waste from the bowels, accompanied by a hard stool specimen, is a sign of constipation. Symptoms of constipation often urge those who suffer from the condition to overuse laxatives, which can lead to lazy bowel syndrome.
The symptoms of lazy bowel syndrome are often similar to those associated with constipation. These can include a general feeling of being bloated, pain in the kidneys or lower back, increased infrequency in bowel movement, nausea and even headaches. One obvious sign of lazy bowel syndrome will be a distended stomach, since waste is being blocked in the bowels and is not being released.
Removal of the blocked waste in the bowels is necessary to relieve all symptoms of lazy bowel syndrome. However, some recommended methods require the use of natural and chemical laxatives to accomplish this, and these may be contributing factors in the development of the syndrome to begin with. Generally, cleansing the entire waste removal system, including the colon, is necessary to begin to re-train the bowels to remove the waste naturally.