For a while, it seemed like there was a new shortage of something every week. Remember the kid’s tylenol and advil shortage a few months ago? (Let’s not talk about that!)
There hasn’t been much of that recently, until this: There’s apparently a run on Laxatives. The “Wall Street Journal” says that there’s a shortage of laxatives, but this time, it’s not a “supply chain” issue, it’s an over-use situation.
The report says that Americans have developed a “laxative habit,” and we’re suffering from excessive constipation because we aren’t eating enough fiber.
People may also be taking laxatives to deal with bowel dysfunction caused by anxiety and stress. Others may be taking laxatives as a weight loss hack to feel skinnier, or because of misinformation on TikTok about what healthy bathroom behavior should be.
Regardless of WHY people are taking laxatives, the demand has increased, and people are noticing some stores have been selling out, especially the name-brands.
Be careful though. Overusing laxatives can lead to chronic dehydration and loss of electrolytes. And you CAN become dependent on them, where you can’t have bowel movements without taking them.
As for the “misinformation,” you don’t need to have a bowel movement every day. A gastroenterology professor from the Mayo Clinic says that it’s variable, and a healthy range is anywhere between three a day and three a week.