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How do I Choose the Best Liquid Laxatives?

Nicole Madison
By
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Liquid laxatives are products consumed for the purpose of relieving constipation. There are many different brands of liquid laxatives from which you may choose. Selecting the best product, however, usually means choosing one that is safe and likely to produce a bowel movement fairly quickly. You may also do well to choose a laxative that is described as gentle, so you won’t have to worry about having severe abdominal cramping or other pain when it works.

When you’re hoping to choose the best liquid laxative, safety should be one of your chief concerns. Some laxative ingredients cause side effects or are described as harsher than others. You’ll likely want to choose a laxative that is described as gentle but effective; some health experts recommend the ingredient senna, for example. Likewise, you’ll do well to chose a laxative that has the fewest side effects associated with it. Additionally, choosing a gentle laxative may mean you won’t have to suffer through severe abdominal cramping or have hard stools exit your body in a violent fashion.

Constipation can be painful and interfere with your ability to enjoy many different aspects of your life. For example, working a full day while constipated can be very unpleasant; even the usual entertainment activities you enjoy can be unpleasant when you’re dealing with constipation. As such, you’ll likely want a laxative that works quickly, but not so quickly that you’ll have to stay close to a bathroom all day. You may find that using a laxative that is designed to work in about eight to 12 hours offers the best results. You can take this type of laxative right before going to bed or a couple of hours before bedtime, and when you wake up in the morning, you should be able to have a bowel movement.

Taste can also play a role in choosing the best liquid laxatives. You may find laxatives in a variety of flavors, and some may be more palatable than others. You may do well to read reviews of the flavor of a liquid laxative before you choose one. If you select one that you cannot stand to swallow, you may have a new problem, such as nausea and vomiting, on top of constipation.

Before using a liquid laxative, which you can usually purchase over the counter, you may do well to consult a doctor. A doctor may recommend liquid laxatives that work well without being too hard on the body. Additionally, a doctor may provide suggestions for avoiding constipation in the future.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison , Writer
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a The Health Board writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.

Discussion Comments

By burcidi — On Sep 13, 2013
The best liquid laxative is prune juice! I'm not a fan of laxatives in general because the body becomes dependent on them.
By fify — On Sep 12, 2013

@feruze-- Ask your son which flavor he prefers.

There is a great children's laxative that's sold at some pharmacies and online. It has a root beer flavor. We used that for our daughter when she had regularity problems. It's a mild laxative that works like a charm and my daughter always liked the flavor.

No matter what type of liquid laxative you get, just make sure that it's as natural as possible and mild. Kids are more sensitive than adults and need something very mild.

By bear78 — On Sep 12, 2013

My six year old son is constipated. His doctor recommended liquid laxatives when it's severe. I saw several liquid laxatives for children at the pharmacy, but they come in different flavors like strawberry, orange and grape.

My son tends to be picky about medicine flavors and I'm not sure if he will like the taste of the laxative.

Has anyone here had to give a child a liquid laxative? Did he or she like the flavor? Which flavor is best and do I need to watch out for anything else?

Nicole Madison

Nicole Madison

Writer

Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a The Health Board writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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