What are Dulcolax tablets?
Dulcolax tablets are laxatives that use an ingredient called bisacodyl to relieve your constipation. Take 1 - 2 tablets before you go to bed at night and they’ll get to work as you sleep, letting you see results in 6 - 12 hours. If you’re an adult suffering from short term constipation, Dulcolax could be the perfect way to help you get regular again.
What is constipation?
Constipation is a normal condition that happens to all of us at least once. When you have constipation it means that you won’t be able to poo for a few days or may find that your poo is harder, larger, or lumpier than usual, making it more difficult to pass. Constipation will usually pass, but you may want to try taking a laxative to help get things moving and make some lifestyle changes that can help you get back to normal. Some of the most common causes of constipation include:
Not getting enough fibre in your diet
Not drinking enough fluids
Not being active or not exercising enough
A change in your diet or daily routine
Side effects of some medications, including codeine or cocodamol
Ignoring the urge to poo when you need to
How will the bisacodyl in Dulcolax tablets relieve my constipation?
Dulcolax tablets each contain 5mg of an active ingredient called bisacodyl, which is a type of medication called a stimulant laxative. Stimulant laxatives work by stimulating the muscles in your bowel, helping to move poo through your bowel so it can be passed more easily. This helps to relieve your constipation and encourages your bowel movements to return to regularity.
Can I use this laxative if I’m pregnant?
Constipation happens a lot during pregnancy, so many pregnant women look for constipation relief. However, you should always speak to your doctor or pharmacist before taking Dulcolax or any other medication during your pregnancy or while you’re breastfeeding. Some medications won’t be right for you or your baby at this time, so it’s best to listen to a professional who will be able to recommend some lifestyle changes and a suitable laxative if necessary.
Can I use this product if I’m taking other medication?
If you’re taking any other medication you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist before taking Dulcolax. This especially applies if you’re already taking:
Diuretics, also known as water tablets, e.g. bendrofluazide or furosemide
Steroid medications, e.g. prednisolone
Any other laxatives
Antacids or proton pump inhibitors, which are used for acid reflux and heartburn
How to take these laxative tablets
Take 1 - 2 Dulcolax tablets before you go to bed at night. When you first begin to take these tablets you should start with 1 a night and increase to 2 if necessary. When your regularity has returned to normal you can stop taking the tablets. Swallow the tablets whole with a sip of water or another cool drink. Do not drink milk or similar drinks with these tablets or within an hour of taking Dulcolax. Do not take these tablets for more than 5 days, if you haven’t had a bowel movement after this time or find that you need to take laxatives every day, you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist.
When should this product not be used?
Dulcolax tablets are not suitable for children under the age of 18. Do not take these tablets if you’re allergic to bisacodyl or any of the other listed ingredients. Do not use these tablets if you:
Are intolerant to some sugars, as this product contains small amounts of lactose and sucrose
Have severe dehydration
Have a blockage in the intestine, also known as ileus
Have a serious abdominal condition, e.g. appendicitis
Have severe abdominal pain, feel sick, and are being sick
Have a blocked bowel (intestinal obstruction)
Have inflammation of the bowel
Does Dulcolax have any side effects?
Like all medications, Dulcolax tablets can have side effects, although not everyone will experience them. These side effects include symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, which will require immediate medical attention:
Swelling of the face, eyes, mouth, tongue, and throat
Difficulty breathing or swallowing
Other side effects you may experience include:
Colitis, which causes abdominal pain and diarrhoea
Allergic reactions, e.g. skin rash
Blood in your poo
Abdominal (stomach) discomfort
Discomfort inside and around your back passage
Abdominal cramps or pain
If you experience these or any other side effects while using this product you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist. For more information about reporting the side effects of medication, please see the MHRA’s Yellow Card Scheme.
Can I use laxatives for weight loss?
Laxatives like Dulcolax tablets can not be used to help with weight loss. Some people believe that taking laxatives can help to reduce the number of calories absorbed from your food, but that simply isn’t true. Misusing laxatives in this way can seriously damage your health, causing issues like severe dehydration or problems with your intestinal function. If you’re at all concerned about your weight, we’d recommend speaking to your doctor, practice nurse, or pharmacist for advice.
How to store this product
Store in a cool, dry place which is below 25 degrees C. Do not use this product if the expiry date printed on the original packaging has passed. Keep out of sight and reach of children.
This product is a medicine; make sure to speak to your doctor or Chemist 4 U pharmacist before taking this product if you have an underlying medical problem or are taking any other medicine or complementary therapy. If your symptoms get worse or continue after taking this product, contact us or your doctor. For medical services in your area, please refer to https://www.nhs.uk
If you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, speak to your doctor or our pharmacist before taking this product. If you suffer from any allergies, ask your doctor or our pharmacist if this medicine is right for you.
Store all medicines out of sight and reach of children.
Please read the included leaflet carefully before using this product.
Please contact your GP if appropriate regarding this product.
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For further information on our medication restrictions policy, please click here.
If you are concerned about addiction of 'over the counter' medication we urge you to visit the below links for professional help and advice:
Each tablet contains 5 mg of bisacodyl as the active ingredient
The other ingredients are: lactose monohydrate, maize starch, sucrose (approximately 21 mg per tablet), glycerol, magnesium stearate, talc (E553b), acacia (powdered), white beeswax (E901), shellac (E904), carnauba wax (E903), titanium dioxide (E171), yellow iron oxide (E172), methacrylic acid-methyl methacrylate copolymer, castor oil and macrogol 6000
Why has buying stimulant laxatives become more restricted?
Don’t you just hate blockages? Whether it is in the nose and you struggle to breathe through it and smell, or whether it is a traffic jam caused by an accident that leaves you stuck on the road, they are a pain.
The same can be said about constipation, a simple blockage in the digestive system that can cause a lot of problems. To find the solution to constipation, first, you need to know the cause.
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