With constipation, the stool is often smaller and drier than usual, which may cause pain during elimination. The feeling that the bowels are not completely emptied is also common. Constipation is often a symptom of other conditions, rather than a condition on its own.

The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC) states that normal bowel frequency can range from 3 times a day to 3 times a week. The NDDIC suggests that bowel frequency less than 3 times a week can signify constipation. However, frequent elimination is a critical component of optimal health, and many healthcare professionals — including Jigsaw Health — recommend bowel movements in the range of 1 to 3 times daily as part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle.