December is Constipation Awareness Month: The Constipation Dilemma

The International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD) Acknowledges December as Constipation Awareness Month

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C., Dec. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Chronic constipation affects up to 20% of adults and 16% of children in the United States. Those affected frequently report that their symptoms interfere with their daily activities, negatively impacting their self-confidence and preventing them from fully engaging in personal and professional activities. While chronic constipation is common among all ages and genders; women, older adults, and non-Caucasian individuals are particularly at risk.

When it comes to “being regular,” peoples’ ideas about their bowel habits can vary considerably. As a result, constipation is one of the most challenging gut symptoms to define. Individuals may report constipation if they sense something is amiss or if they are feeling uncomfortable. People who are constipated may experience one or more of the following; 

  • reduced stool frequency,
  • hard stools,
  • difficulty passing stools,
  • straining,
  • painful bowel movements, or
  • feeling of incomplete emptying after defecation.

Abdominal symptoms are also common in individuals with constipation. These symptoms include:

  • abdominal pain – pain varying from dull to sharp that occurs in the belly area
  • abdominal discomfort – discomfort varying from dull to sharp that occurs in the belly area
  • bloating – a buildup of gas or swollen feeling in the stomach or intestines
  • distention – an uncomfortable swelling in the intestines that causes the abdominal area to visibly expand
  • nausea – often including an urge to vomit

The onset and duration of constipation are important to consider. Most who see a healthcare provider have had longstanding constipation symptoms. A sudden (acute) onset of symptoms should prompt a visit to the doctor. “It is important to speak with your healthcare provider first so they can check for complications and other possible causes of your symptoms,” said IFFGD President Ceciel T. Rooker.

IFFGD President Ceciel T. Rooker commented, “most people have experienced the inconvenience of having constipation at some point in their life; however, for a person who lives with chronic constipation, it can be extremely debilitating and life-altering. Medical professionals understand the different types of constipation and how to treat them, but there are still some uncertainties for people like me who suffer daily. Therefore, it is important to raise awareness and help make an uncomfortable topic a little more comfortable,” continued IFFGD President Ceciel T. Rooker

December is Constipation Awareness Month. In recognition of Constipation Awareness Month, the International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD) raises awareness to acknowledge the dilemmas that so many face — using the hashtags #ConstipationDilemma and #ConstipationAwarenessMonth on social media platforms to amplify the voice of the patient community. To help IFFGD raise awareness about constipation, click here and download the 2022 Constipation Awareness social media campaign material. To learn more about constipation, visit for written educational material and visit to watch animated videos about constipation.

The International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD) is a nonprofit education and research organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by chronic gastrointestinal illnesses. Founded in 1991, IFFGD helps improve patient outcomes by enhancing awareness, improving education, and supporting and encouraging research into treatments and cures for chronic digestive disorders.

Media Contact:
Hayley McCorkle
(414) 964-1799

SOURCE The International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders