Parkinson’s News Forums Forums Living ​With​ ​Parkinson’s Symptoms and Progression Do you struggle with constipation? If so, have you found any helpful tools or treatments to manage it?

  • Do you struggle with constipation? If so, have you found any helpful tools or treatments to manage it?

    Posted by Mary Beth Skylis on June 19, 2023 at 10:07 am

    Many Parkinson’s patients seem to report constipation at some point or another. This can be both uncomfortable and dangerous. And learning how to live with this symptom can be a challenge. 

    Do you struggle with constipation? If so, have you found any helpful tools or treatments to manage it?

    TomMuniz replied 2 weeks ago 17 Members · 17 Replies
  • 17 Replies
  • Kim

    June 20, 2023 at 3:31 pm

    Struggling with constipation would be an understatement. This started way before Parkinson’s was even on my radar. I even underwent two colonoscopies as a precaution. Glycerin suppositories used to work now I take stool softeners daily, drink 80 ounces of water, exercise, and even use Dulcolax suppositories but this does not seem to help. I am also currently taking motegrity, which I don’t think is working for me. Taking bulk fiber, or things like MiraLAX just makes it worse because I don’t get an urge to go and everything just seems to get stuck—for lack of a better way to describe it. I would love to hear the suggestions of others with Parkinson’s that have been successful in treating this symptom.

  • Steve R

    June 20, 2023 at 4:27 pm

    I have been using Myralax with breakfast every other day and it seems to do   the trick.  I wonder about LONG-TERM use

  • Dr Jerry Rosenstein

    June 21, 2023 at 8:24 am

    I take 1 generic colace (docusate sodium 100 mg) in the AM and one in the PM plus

    1 Magnesium Citrate 400 mg in the AM and one in the PM.

    Seems to solve 90% of the constipation problems for me.


    Good Luck

  • Roberta Patterson

    June 21, 2023 at 8:24 am

    Chia seeds every day.  At least two heaping tablespoons.

  • Jacquelyn J. Suter

    June 21, 2023 at 8:28 am

    During diagnosis of PD, I regularly took a product that I get in Thailand (where I live) called Senokot.  It worked very  well as a stool softner.  But when I searched online for more information, I found that Senokot was not recommended long term, as I suspect most other laxatives are not.

    As a part of my efforts to eat a more natural diet, I decided to try the old tried and true remedy of prunes.  I get the Sun Sweet (American) brand, pitted prunes, no additives (including sugar).  In addition to being incredibly good and naturally sweet to eat, they have completely turned my bowel movements around.   To date, I have been eating 4-5 whole prunes after breakfast, for about 3 months now, and my bowel movements are ‘perfect’!  Soft and easy to evacuate.

    I no longer take Senokot.  When first taking the prunes, I would take a tablet of Senokot with the prunes to aid in the transition.  As I saw that the prunes were having an effect, I weaned myself off the Senokot.  Now, as I said above, bowels are ‘perfect’.

    Just one caveat, if you decide to try prunes, GIVE THEM TIME TO WORK!  Perhaps use a transitioning product, like I did with Senokot.  But when you decide to stop transitioning, give prunes a couple of months to see a desired result.  As with anything we put into our bodies, it takes time for our system to acclimate to it and begin to change.


  • dr t m kutty

    June 21, 2023 at 8:29 am

    Eating around four fig before going to bed is beneficial.
    Also abdominal exercise,ie voluntarily contracting abdominal muscles from upper abdomen(epigastrium)to lower abdomen(hypogastium) will increase peristaltic movements and is beneficial for constipation.this abdominal exercise can be performed while dyskinesia is troubling
    Dr kutty

  • JB

    June 21, 2023 at 8:54 am

    My husband has struggled with constipation for many years, probably 15 years now. He used to eat Nu-Lax (senna, fig, dates) – worked well, but the texture wasn’t very unpalatable. We then found pure Senna leaf. 100% leaf made into tea (2 pinches) with also addition of fruit tea which takes the bitterness away. Non caffeine. Both products natural, not premade in bags – twice a day afternoon and before bed. This has kept his bowels moving regularly every 2 to 3 days for years.
    Also like Jerry, about 5 years ago added Colace – 1 x 30mg pill in am and one in pm. The softener not the laxative type.

    He has always been a big fruit eater, and fibre. He still eats prunes, probably 5 or 6 a day but they alone do nothing for him. If he misses a tea for some reason, he pays for it which is really not nice.

  • Robert Harris

    June 21, 2023 at 4:13 pm

    As others have, I have tried a bunch of remedies. But the ones that worked for me all included warnings: Don’t use for more than 7 days [or some similar amount.] I finally discovered that the treatment I use every day is–water.

    Directions: Buy a few enema bulbs (I use the 4 ounce Fleet). Open the bulb and POUR OUT the saline solution. Fill the bulb with nicely warm water. Insert tip and empty the contents as much as possible into rectum. Sit on the toilet and within five minutes you should get results. Usually once a day works for me.

    Don’t forget to lubricate the tip before each treatment. Wash the bottle and tip and set both aside to dry.

    This is  as close to nature and away from chemicals you can get.


  • Michael Kawalec

    June 22, 2023 at 8:28 am

    I’ve found that yogurt and kefir can help a lot with constipation and with other Parkinson’s symptoms.   There was an article on Parkinsons News Today recently about how the microbiome of all Parkinsons sufferers is messed up pretty badly.  I tried every different brand of yogurt and kefir I could find (to get as many different kinds of “good” bacteria that I could) twice a day for the last five weeks and my regularity, with no laxatives, is starting to return, I have more energy and strangely, it feels natural to swing my arms when I walk!  Also, eat something that gives you plenty of fiber and get lots of exercise.

    • Jo S.

      June 22, 2023 at 4:57 pm

      Michael, what brand(s) did you find work? Are you consuming a full 8 ounces of yogurt or kefir  (beverage or spread?) two times a day? I would love to find out more details about what is working for you and how much and when you’re having the yogurt or kefir.

  • Wobblygirl

    June 22, 2023 at 6:03 pm

    I’ve just discovered kiwi fruit. One a day is working well – at the moment. No idea why!


  • Pat Macnaughton

    June 23, 2023 at 8:16 am

    A few months ago, I had 2 horrible constipation bouts within a few weeks.  Tried all kinds of laxatives to finally find relief.  My doctor recommended more vegetables in my diet which I always seem to fail to do.  For years, I was taking 2 x 400 mg magnesium tablets and continue to do so. A pharmacist suggested MetaMucil fibre capsules. I can’t stand drinking the mixture stuff.  Though the package dosage is 5 caps  per day, I find that only one works very well.  Breaks up the stool – slightly gassy.  Really easy for prevention in my case.


  • Kim

    June 24, 2023 at 7:50 pm

    I want to say that everyone’s input has helped me and I appreciate the information. This forum also makes me realize that lots of us have had to try various approaches (I am not alone) and that not every treatment works for everyone. I am having some success taking magnesium and stool softeners so I am optimistic. I had tried it before but the magnesium made me nauseous and I don’t think it was the right kind of magnesium. I found a brand of magnesium citrate (Pure) I like. Hopefully this does the trick for a while. Now to focus on getting relief for my low back pain…

  • Roger

    June 25, 2023 at 3:25 am

    I started to have periodic problems with constipation recently. I take one sachet of “Movicol” (available at Pharmacies in Australia) on alternate days and this seems to be working

  • Sherman Paskett

    May 7, 2024 at 7:35 pm

    Fourteen years post-diagnosis, I was bouncing between constipation and diarrhea daily. I because concerned about overuse of laxatives and decided to take a different approach: I examined the food I ate and found my typical American diet consisted of meat and carbs and an occasional carrot. For the past few months I have made sure I get plenty of natural fiber daily along with a supplement. I take magnesium which promotes sleep and has a laxative effect, but also many other beneficial effects. I eat about 2/3 cup of quality yogurt (plain, not flavored) to which I add some fresh fruit. I intend to try kefir soon. And I mind hydration. When my mouth gets dry I hit the bottle, taking sips, not gulps. Your body will just dispose of the water if it gets too much too fast. This is especially important if your water has a fiber supplement or magnesium citrate in it. So far I have reduced laxative use from once or twice a day to once every five days.

  • John Robinson

    May 9, 2024 at 2:31 pm

    Five prunes after lunch and five prunes after dinner seems to be working for me right now.

  • TomMuniz

    May 9, 2024 at 6:17 pm

    My long sought solution is tsp of Miralax mixed with prune juice, daily with, if needed, a weekly glycerin suppository as a catalyst. I I am now pretty regular on bowel movements (every 1.5 days). I also switched to a Mediterranean diet and take probiotics daily.

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