Product Type: Senokot medicinal products
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Senokot Max Strength
Member Name: sandemp
Senokot Max Strength
Advantages: Easy to take, work over night, do actually work
Disadvantages: Don't soften the poo, no flexibility in dose
I live with a condition called hypermobility and an aspect of this syndrome is weak joints that often give way leading to permanent damage and in my case a lot of pain. Among the different medications I take to control this pain is Codeine, which provides fairly good pain relief but with the price of moderate to severe constipation (which is also a symptom of hypermobility in itself). The vast majority of the time I keep the constipation in check by limiting my codeine intake and ensuring I eat lots of poo inducing food, but there are times when I find myself totally bound up. At times like this my body needs a little help and after having trialled various different medications I've discovered that in my case Senokot is my drug of choice.
Although I've never been what you would call regular in my movements (how I envy those people who poo at the same time every day) I can normally poo at least once a day, even if that poo is uncomfortably hard and takes a lot of straining. But should I need to take codeine more than twice a day for more than a day all my motions stop completely leaving me feeling bloated with stomach cramps and this is when I find myself needing help. In the last two years I've tried all of the various "flavours" of Senokot, including the original, comfort and these the Max Strength and at various points throughout this review I will be comparing them to the other varieties.
Senokot Max Strength is a laxative in tablet form that contains an amount of senna equivalent to 15mg of sennosides, which happens to be exactly twice the amount of senna to that found in the standard tablets. They also contain calcium phosphate, maize starch, lactose and magnesium stearate, so if you are allergic to or have sensitivities to any of these you should avoid these tablets. The tablets contain natural Senna (from Senna pods) that has been treated so that there is a consistent amount in each dose. The tablets are fairly small, but funnily enough twice the size of the standard Senokot, and easily swallowed with a glass of water. The maximum dose is one tablet in any 24 hour period and it's recommended to take one before bed as they take 8-12 hours to work. These tablets are only recommended for those over the age of 12 (unless advised by a doctor) and you should consult
a doctor if you have not passed a motion within three days, if you need to take them everyday or abdominal pain persists. I would also recommend speaking to your doctor or midwife before taking these while pregnant, as I was advised to only take one of the standard tablets as it is possible for these to cause the womb to contract as they stimulate the bowel. But I was told they are safe to take while breast-feeding as the active ingredient doesn't pass into the bloodstream.
Senna itself is a natural product derived from the leaves or seed pods of he Senna plant. Senna has been used for centuries to purge the bowels and works by irritating the colon and causing it to spasm, literally pushing the poo out. What senna does not do is soften the poo, so it will not make passing that hard, solid mass any less painful, but it will make it so you really have to go. Just because Senna is natural that doesn't mean it's safe to take in excess or that you may not have an adverse reaction. Something I didn't know is that as well as being a purgative Senna is also a stimulant and is often used in dieter's teas as it is not only a laxative but also reduces appetite. Because it is a stimulant, I would recommend speaking to your doctor before taking it if you suffer from a condition such as heart disease or high blood pressure.
==Me and My Poos==
My recent bout of constipation started about a week ago, I was pooing but not as much as I should have and was starting to feel bloated and experiencing the tell tale stinky farts that are my body's way of telling me I needed a clear out before I blocked up completely. Realising that I needed a bit of help in the poo department I went to take some Senokot, only to discover I had run out. So I called my partner at work and asked him to pick me up some Senokot Comfort (my Senokot of choice), only for him to bring me back a pack of Senokot Max, which he picked up at the very reasonable price of £1.50 for 24 tablets.
After reading the instructions printed on the back of the box (there wasn't an information leaflet) I took one tablet along with a glass of water before bed. While bigger than the standard tablets, the tablet was small enough to not give any problems when it came to swallowing, even though it did look a slightly murky green. I actually took the tablet at about 10pm and found that my sleep wasn't disturbed by any stomach cramps. By about eight the next morning I was starting to feel the urge to poo, and shortly after the clear out began. As Senokot Max doesn't contain any softening ingredients that poo wasn't the most comfortable of experiences. I still felt blocked but was experiencing waves of cramps along with an irresistible urge to poo. Ten minutes later and with the help of the Senokot irritating my bowels into action later the blockage was cleared and over the space of the day I steadily cleared out and started to feel normal again.
I'm not going to say using Senokot gave me the most comfortable visit to the toilet or made clearing the blockage any less painful, but it did make easier and forced my bowels into action. I find that it generally takes ten hours for the Senokot to start kicking my bowels into action and then after the first poo I'll spend the rest of the day clearing out, experiencing uncomfortable (but not particularly painful) cramps and very little notice that a poo is on the way. I certainly wouldn't take these the night before going out for the day as I need to be very close to a toilet. I, personally, find that I have a residual effect from the Senokot for a couple of days after taking them, as I'm able to poo near enough normally for a while before becoming bunged up again.
Although this particular version of Senokot wouldn't be my laxative of choice (I far prefer the Comfort that also soften the poo), I do find that they are very effective. While it's nice that I only have to take one tablet, I think I prefer the flexibility of the standard tablets where I can see if only one tablet will do the job. Still if given the choice between repeating the experience of being totally bunged up for a week (the blockage was so big I ended up bruised, if you know what I mean) and taking one of these tablets as soon as the blockage appears, then these win. As to a recommendation, well that's quite difficult as although these work, I can't help but remember that the Comfort tablets make the experience that much more pleasant (if pooing could ever be called pleasant). So I'm giving the Senokot Max four stars out of five with them losing that star because that first poo is still so painful.
Summary: These do work but I prefer the flexibility of the standard and the softening of the comfort
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