You know how uncomfortable and frustrating constipation can be when you are suffering with it. Imagine how your little one feels. There are remedies and suggestions to help ease their discomfort and get them back to regular bowel movements. Now, what should you do if your child is constipated?
How to Know If Your Child Is Constipated
Besides being grouchy, he or she may complain of belly aches. Pay attention to whether they go into the bathroom every day and how many times. If they are not going at least once a day, or 2 or 3 times a week, they are probably constipated.
Kids can cause constipation by avoiding going. If they are particularly active, they may hold it in because they don’t want to interrupt their game. Some kids are afraid of sitting on the toilet (or a strange toilet) and moving their bowels.
The most likely times children will become constipated happens when they are an infant and switch from breast milk to formula, as a toddler when they begin toilet training, and when they start school.
If you see hard dry stools, if they make faces and have body language that tells you they are holding it in, and you see stains in their underwear, these are clear signs of constipation.
Natural Ways to Help Your Child Have Normal Bowel Movements
You may already be doing many of these tips, but may need to increase them.
- Make sure your little one is drinking enough water. Fluids are key to easy bowel movements. Your child might have had painful ones and that has deterred them from getting on the toilet.
- Give your child plenty of fiber through fresh fruits and veggies. Most kids like fruits so feed them what they like. As for veggies, give them leafy greens like broccoli and spinach. They may turn their nose up, but they need them.
- Avoid drinks with caffeine and limit junk food.
- Give them a T-time. This is a specific toilet time. Choose what works for you and them, like after breakfast and after dinner. Encourage them to sit for at least 10 minutes and not rush.
- Make sure your child has regular exercise. This encourages bowel movements.
When to See Your Pediatrician for Your Child’s Constipation
Make an appointment with Pediatric Associates, Inc in Columbus, OH if your child has been constipated for more than two weeks.
Your pediatrician will do a thorough physical check and ask about medical history. They will want to know about any other physical signs like vomiting or stool that contains blood, and they may decide to run tests.
Pediatric Associates, Inc may recommend a mild stool softener and over-the-counter fiber supplements.
A laxative or enema may provide relief. Do this in consultation with your pediatrician.
Just remember, don’t panic. Most bouts of constipation in children are mild and temporary.
Contact Pediatric Associates, Inc if your child is not responding to any of the natural ways to relieve their constipation.