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Child’s Constipation Treatment

Child’s Constipation Treatment


How to Treat your Child’s Constipation

Has your child ever said “Mummy, it hurts when I poo,” when coming out of the toilet? Constipation, a relatively common condition in children, is the most likely cause.

What signs do you look for to see whether your toddler is constipated? Apart from the obvious unpleasant bowel movements, keep an eye out for the following signs:

Child’s Constipation Symptoms

Constipation causes a child to have fewer bowel movements, and when they do, their faeces are dry, hard, and difficult to pass. Constipation can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • The stool is being held. This indicates your child is trying to hold their bowel movements in, either because they’re worried about potty training, don’t want to use the toilet in specific situations (like school), or are terrified of a painful bathroom encounter. (Constipation can create a vicious cycle; if “pooping” hurts once, the child may be more hesitant to go the next time.)
  • Lack of Fibre. A diet lacking in fibre or containing insufficient fluid (or both) is frequent in toddlers moving from formula to whole milk.
  • Medication side effects.

Constipation Treatments

Most cases of constipation have three major therapies, which usually operate in tandem.

A high-fibre diet with plenty of fluids

A high-fibre diet along with plenty of water is recommended. This means including a range of fresh fruits and vegetables, high-fibre cereals, whole-grain bread (at least 3-5 grammes of fibre per serving), and beans and other legumes, such as chickpeas and lentils, on your child’s plate. Trail mix (let them make their own) and popcorn with minimal salt or butter are two healthy sources of fibre that kids often enjoy. Probiotic-rich foods, such as yoghurt, can also help with digestive health.

Don’t forget about fluids while you’re focusing on fibre. You can make things worse if your child eats a lot of high-fibre food but doesn’t drink enough water to assist it to pass through their system. Throughout the day, your youngster should drink plenty of water as well as some milk. Sugary drinks should be limited to 4 ounces per day for younger children and 6-8 ounces per day for school-aged children.

A stool softener

To help empty the bowels, use a stool softener. In most cases, these are quite safe for youngsters. When administering a stool softener to their child for constipation, two common blunders are not utilising a large enough dose or terminating it too soon. For example, you may believe that after your child’s first normal-looking bowel movement, you can stop giving a stool softener, but quitting too soon may merely set your child up for another bout of constipation. Some children may require the use of a stool softener for a period of time. Your kid’s paediatrician can advise you on the best dose schedule for your child as you continue to make and enforce dietary changes.

Regular toilet time

It’s time to go to the bathroom. Encourage your child to go to the bathroom first thing in the morning and at the end of each meal or snack. Telling rather than asking, especially for a younger child, may yield greater results. Say, “It’s time to go to the toilet now,” rather than “Do you need to go to the toilet?”

When you mix all three of these strategies, you’ll get the best outcomes. A high-fibre diet won’t cure severe constipation without the help of a stool softener; on the other hand, if your child quits taking a stool softener and continues to eat a low-fibre diet and doesn’t drink enough water, the problem is likely to return.

When to call a doctor

By following the steps above constipation usually clears up after a few days, but if it doesn’t either call your GP or call 111 for further advice.