Laxative Dependency

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Laxative Dependency

Postby hayleyw » 18 Oct 2015, 11:17

For the last month or so i've been taking 1 satchet of Laxido everyday. It helps keep my bms soft but after a spat of quite watery stools I decided to give it a rest for a few days. Yesterday and today I paid the price and my bm was hard and painful to pass. I have no issue with taking Laxido symptom wise, it's easy on my stomach and doesn't have a taste at all when mixed with cordiel. I just worry long term it will reduce the natural function of my bowels. Laxido like Movicol is an osmatic laxative and since it isn't a stimulant i've been told by doctors it wont harm my bowels long term. Having said that i've read sites on the internet which state any form of laxative can be harmful long term. My own GP said not to worry but i'm still not 100% reassured. I know a lot of people on here take some form of laxative too so i'm wondering what your take on it is and if you share my concerns.
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Canadabum » 18 Oct 2015, 13:02

Hayleyw -- great ? -- I have had a similar experience to you. I have been using Miralax and then tried to stop only to be faced with a hard and painful bm or two. It was pretty discouraging for me too. The reason i wanted to stop using the M was for the same reasons you point out -- it is generally agreed to not use these laxatives, no matter how mild for too long.

However -- I am still using. I use a half dose a day. Quarter in the morning and a quarter in the evening. I use measuring spoons so I get an accurate and consistent amount each day. My plan is to wean off slowly...go from a teaspoon of the stuff in the morn and evening to 3/4 a teaspoon each time for a couple weeks, then to 1/2 a teaspoon for a couple weeks and see how it goes.

When I got checked out by a very reputable surgeon -- he specifically told me that it would be fine for me to take miralax for an entire year without it doing any harm. From what I gather there are two real fears -- one is that people with eating disorders use these products for the wrong reasons and the second is that if you do not have a good diet and you use laxatives you may be ridding your body of needed minerals, electrolytes etc....so make sure you are eating a well balanced diet while taking this stuff.

The truth is -- if we could all feel comfortable taking this stuff for our entire lives my guess is many of us would breathe a sigh of relief...soft bms...what a relief!!! I was also quite concerned about taking this long term (as in more than 1 month)...my doctor assured me it was ok. For my own piece of mind i intend on trying to wean myself off over a number of months...I want to give my scar tissue a good chance to really heal and strengthen before i subject myself to potential damage.

I hope that helps a bit...pls let me know what you decide to do. Are you basically healed?

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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby hayleyw » 18 Oct 2015, 13:38

Thanks for the reply Canadabum! I've read about abusing laxatives to lose weight and about certain types reducing electrolytes etc. I'm not too worried about that. I eat quite well. My fear is that one day I wont be able to have a bm without the aid of a laxative. At the moment I can but it's just hard, not constipated but the consistency, i'm sure if I had a healthy bum it wouldn't bother me. I wouldn't say I was healed but I am improving. When the bm is soft I get minimal to no pain at all but when it's harder it's a different story. Still better than I was when even soft bms were uncomfortable.

For now i'm going to carry on taking a satchet a day. I'm going to my doctor next week to review some medication so i'll bring up my concerns again with her.
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Canadabum » 18 Oct 2015, 13:45

Perhaps consider weaning over a long period...like 4-6 months. That way your system can get used to the change.

Please keep us posted on what your GP says.

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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby hayleyw » 23 Oct 2015, 04:30

Went to see my gp this morning and mentioned my concerns over my constant laxative use. She told me the type of laxative I take Laxido/Movicol isn't a stimulant and wont do any harm to my bowels. She said to use as long as I want. Really reassured me. I trust her word which I can't say for every doctor i've ever seen, but she is one of the good ones.

Posting this to reassure anyone else in the same situation as me. On a sidenote she said things like Senna can cause bowel issues when used frequently so if you are taking that kind of thing a lot thing about switching to something else.
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby suzyljank » 23 Oct 2015, 08:25

Miralax or Movicol is not a stimulant laxative and does not make you dependent. It draws water into your colon to help make your stool softer and easier to pass. What most people have to get over is if you have a fissure, are prone to fissures or have anal stenosis you already can't have normal bms comfortably. The treatment for all of these issues to to keep your stool soft. If that requires miralax (movicol) on a daily basis it's no different than someone having to take medication for blood pressure on a daily basis. I'll be on it for the rest of my life and I'm just thankful there's a product out there without a prescription that helps.
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Ana » 12 May 2016, 07:30

Hello,

I have the same concerns as you guys. I suffer from very lazy bowel. This has been the case since I was a child. When I went to see my GP more than a year ago, she prescribed be Ladixo/Movicol which did help although the BM does get a bit watery but better this than not going at all! I then went to see her again as I was afraid my bowels will be dependent on it but she said having had constipation for such a long time, I should if fact take it long term even a year or so and see how I get on. So I have now been using it for more than a year (and obviously with the help of 'natural' stuff like prunes, plenty of vegetables and fruit) but I do worry that it shouldn't be used for so long as I've heard mixed opinions from different GPs and people in other forums. I was referred to the hospital to see consultant as well and he seem to be ok with me using it daily.
I was taking this medicine on a repeat prescription and hope it will be renewed...No sure how I would cope without it..:(
Happy to see you have been advised that it is safe.

PS. I'm new to the forum and live in the UK. Nice to meet you all. So glad to have found your forum!
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Canadabum » 15 May 2016, 21:31

Ana - Welcome...glad to hear your perspective and experience. I have been taking Miralax for about a year now -- I take a quarter dose a day. In addition I take Metamucil and some other soluble fibre supplement. For me I find that the fibre and the miralax helps keep it soft (but not too soft) and regular...have you thought of using a fibre supplement to help with the peristalsis?

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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Ana » 16 May 2016, 03:30

Hi Canadabum!

Many thanks for your reply. I take two satchets (or two and a half) of Laxido at night, and it often helps, but I cannot seem to adjust the right dose and cannot figure out why. Sometimes it's forming good and soft stools and sometimes loose and runny and therefore not so effective I would say. I've tried to reduce the dose a bit but then it's not effective almost at all. But ultimately, I'd rather use it as at least I have some BM.
I've not tried any fiber supplements yet (though I've bought Fybogel) because I can't stand taking any more stuff which is mixed with water. I feel bloated most of the time even after a light meal :( To be fair, I am a bit depressed because of it at the moment. Perhaps I will try and order Metamucil on Amazon, I've read on the internet that peope do have good results with it.

Like you say, I need something that would aid my peristalsis which is very slow and has always been. Prunes did help in the past, but are not so effective not with Laxido and I'm recuctant to go off Laxido and try prunes on its own. If, however I take a stimulant laxative (which I obviously try to avoid as it is harmful), then the BM is somewhat larger and better but I do not usually have the same effect with Laxido. Because of this whole situation, I loose appetite and do not eat a lot throughout the day, which is not good either, so it's like a vicious circle.
I'm wondering if anybody has an experience with bulk-forming agents or fiber supplements that come in capsules/tablets and whether they are as effective as those that are mixed with water? ALso, which fiber is the best, soluble or insoluble as I think there is a difference..?
I'm seeing my consultant next week and maybe I will push him for some test or examinations to be done, because so far I have not had colonoscopy or anything as he thinks I'm young and there can't be anything serious there...
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Re: Laxative Dependency

Postby Canadabum » 16 May 2016, 05:54

Metamucil is a combo of soluble and some insoluble. I take it in powder form. I'm afraid that it may make you feel bloated if you already do...but it may be helpful enough that you will bear with it. The other option is to find a 100% soluble fibre that may not bloat you as much. Soluble fibre absorbs water whereas insoluble fibre basically just travels through your system without absorbing additional water.
I have found that it is good to change up the routine from time to time - from prunes to dates and papaya etc...if I let my body get too used to certain foods they stop being as effective,.,that's just me though.
There is discussion on the board about fibre pills - use the search function.
All best - CB
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