Polyethylene glycol 3350, the generic name for laxatives such as MiraLax and Glycolax, is facing shortages in US stores due to increased demand.
According to a report by wall street journalThe deficiency stems from a variety of factors, such as low fiber intake, an aging population, and disruption in bathroom schedules due to hybrid work and travel.
Additionally, gastrological and behavioral experts tell the WSJ that laxative supplies may also be affected by post-pandemic bowel problems associated with poor diet, less exercise and increased anxiety during COVID-19.
But recently, some social media users have started using laxatives as a cheaper alternative to Ozempic for weight loss, raising concerns among experts.
Doctors told the WSJ that TikTok’s #GutTok spreads misinformation about healthy bathroom habits, with videos without any evidence that these laxatives help detox or reduce bloating.
“When people have excessive bowel movements and feel completely empty inside, it gets wrapped up in thinness and health,” eating disorder expert Dr. Jenna DiLosi tells the WSJ. They also said they have seen a significant increase in teenage patients abusing laxatives. over the past two years and teens have told him they get the idea from TikTok, where #GutTok video Over 1.1 billion views.
But it’s not just MiraLAX and Glycolax that are facing shortages. Pharmaceutical giant Sanofi told nbc news Its over-the-counter laxative, Dulcolax, is also facing supply constraints.
“Over the past few months, we have seen unprecedented demand for Dulcolax products,” a Sanofi spokesperson told NBC News. “As a result, some retailers may temporarily not have certain Dulcolax products on their shelves.”
Experts warn Abuse of laxatives can lead to dehydration, cramps, nausea, vomiting, muscle weakness, increased risk of heart attack, and kidney failure.