Can Stress Cause Constipation

Did you know that about 12% of the world’s population suffers from chronic constipation, and stress can be one of the reasons for it? Constipation is the most common gastrointestinal condition or symptom characterized by dysregulated bowel movements. Your brain greatly impacts your gut and can disturb bowel movements.

So head down below to learn more about the question, “Can stress cause constipation?”

Can Stress Cause Constipation?

Yes, stress can cause constipation by releasing hormones such as cortisol or adrenaline that activate the fight or flight response, increasing the permeability of the intestines, reducing the number of good bacteria in the gut, and eating an unhealthy diet. 

How Can Stress Cause Constipation?

Stress causes constipation in various ways, which are mentioned in detail below.

Activates Fight-Or-Flight Response

Stress releases epinephrine, one of the major hormones in the fight-or-flight response. Epinephrine shifts the blood flow from the gut toward other vital organs like the brain, heart, or lungs. This results in constipation.

Increase Intestinal Permeability

Stress causes increased intestines’ permeability, allowing other inflammatory compounds to enter your gut easily and cause a feeling of abdominal fullness. This is one of the common complaints of patients suffering from constipation. 

Impact Gut Microbiome

There are many healthy bacteria in your gut that aid in digestion. Stress can reshape the composition of the gut microbiome through inflammation, stress hormones, and autonomic alterations. It can also reduce the number of healthy gut bacteria, resulting in constipation.

Inadequate Dietary Intake

Stress may induce dietary issues, resulting in excessive eating of unhealthy or unhygienic food. People who suffer from stress eat high-calorie and fat-containing food that may disturb bowel movements and gut microbiome and ultimately cause constipation. 

Stress-Induced Crf Release

Stress releases a hormone called corticotropic releasing factor (CRF), which causes bowel dysfunction by directly impacting the gut microbiota and increasing intestinal permeability. CRF also induces gut inflammation.

How to Treat Stress-Induced Constipation

The enteric nervous system forms a gut-brain axis that builds a connection between stress and constipation in adults. A disturbed gut-brain connection can negatively affect mental health and overall physical well-being. However, there are many ways to treat stress-induced constipation. Some of them are given below.

Improve Dietary Intake

Adding fiber to your diet and avoiding high-fat-containing food is essential to relieve stress-induced constipation.  Insoluble fibers increase the pace of bowel movements, while soluble fibers soften the waste product to make it easy to pass through the intestines. 

Sugar can induce more inflammation and can increase anxiety, which further impacts your bowel movements. So, avoiding sugar can help you relieve constipation. 

Keep Yourself Hydrated

If you are wondering, ‘ Can stress cause constipation through dehydration? ‘ The answer is yes. People tend to drink less water and choose carbonated drinks and coffee to relieve stress, which causes constipation. So, keeping yourself well hydrated can prevent or treat constipation. 


Exercising strengthens the core muscles and stimulates intestinal contractions, which help move waste products through the intestines and relieve constipation. Cardio exercises like brisk walking, running, or biking can ease constipation and stress. 


If you are suffering from severe chronic constipation, then your doctor may prescribe laxatives. These medications soften the waste product and increase bowel motility.  The most common types of laxatives are bulk-forming laxatives, lubricants, stimulants, osmetics, and stool softeners.  

Seek Therapy to Relieve Stress

Can stress cause constipation even if you take medications? 

To treat constipation, you should look for its root cause. Stress can be caused by any traumatic event, hectic life schedule, or other medical condition. So, it is important to seek therapy to relieve stress and get rid of constipation. 

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy is a kind of psychological therapy that can help regulate your emotions and identify triggers. You can learn how to manage stress in a variety of ways through this session.
  • Relaxation therapy also reduces and manages stress. At Mocean, we provide sound therapy which promotes relaxation by activating the parasympathetic nervous system. 
  • It is recommended to monitor your stress and identify triggers. It may be a challenging task, but you can journal your thoughts and interpret what is causing stress or anxiety. 

How Long Does Stress Constipation Last?

Stress constipation can last for a number of days or weeks. However, it also depends on the stressors. You should identify underlying triggers causing anxiety or stress to treat constipation. It is a chronic condition and requires long-term management. 

How to Get Rid of Stress Constipation

You can get rid of stress constipation by following a healthy lifestyle that includes an adequate diet without sugar, caffeinated drinks, or alcohol, exercising regularly, and staying hydrated. Laxatives can also relieve constipation in the short term, but they can be addicting, so it is better to release stress to prevent bowel dysregulation. 

According to research, the worst prognosis of constipation is associated with female gender, onset in old age, delayed therapy, and longer colonic transit time. 

How MOCEAN Can Restore Your Gut Health?

Since you learned about ‘can stress cause constipation,’ now you might be wondering how to reset your gut health. Well, for that, MOCEAN is the perfect choice!

MOCEAN can restore your gut health and release stress in various ways. Our experts don’t use harsh chemicals or invasive methods to correct your gut health. Instead, our professionals use medicinal therapies that improve your gut and overall well-being. 

At MOCEAN Wellness Center in NYC, we offer an infrared sauna, salt room, sound therapy, and red light therapy to promote a healthy gut microbiome, relieve constipation, and release stress or anxiety.

The Bottom Line

Constipation is a chronic condition that can be caused by a variety of factors. But can stress cause constipation? The answer is yes. Stress also plays a key role in causing constipation by releasing stress hormones and disturbing gut barriers through increasing permeability and reducing good bacteria. You can treat constipation by making healthy lifestyle changes or through medications.  

If you want to release stress, improve gut health, and alleviate constipation, book your appointment at MOCEAN Longevity Centre in NYC right now!

Then we create a health plan tailored to your needs.

Based on the results, we develop a personalized treatment plan for each individual to promote optimal health. With 1-on-1 consultations, cutting-edge technology, and a team of experts who care about getting you better, MOCEAN offers you a comprehensive road map on how to become the healthiest version of yourself.