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Constipation can be uncomfortable and painful besides making your child cry each time he/she is emptying his/her bowel.
Now, as a mom, this can be emotionally stressful and disconcerting- you’ll sympathize with your little one but sometimes you can feel pretty much helpless.
The good news is there are tons of ways to deal with constipation in kids- from feeding your baby certain foods to help kids poop to natural methods and even medications to treat constipation such as stool softeners.
Read on to find out how to help kids with constipation (using foods, exercise, natural laxatives, medicine, etc.)
How to help kids with constipation
While there is no set number of bowel movements a child should have, it’s abnormal and possibly dangerous for your child to go three or fewer times per week without pooping.
If this is what has been happening to your kiddo, below is how to help your boy or girl get some relief:
How to help kids with constipation- natural methods, medication, and more
· Foods that help a child with constipation
Increase your kid’s fiber intake
To start with, you have to know that a high fiber diet is very important when dealing with constipation.
For this reason, loading your child’s plate with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, high-fiber cereals, whole grain bread, and a variety of beans and other legumes (for example chickpeas and lentils) will be very helpful in relieving constipation.
Oh and don’t strain your mind wondering how your child will swallow some of these because he/she just started weaning- mashing or blending them makes them easy to swallow for your child.
Yogurt can also promote good digestive health because it contains probiotics.
For starters, probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for kid’s digestive system and studies have shown that they can help ease constipation as well.
Give your child fiber supplements
There comes a time when your child’s body may not absorb fiber as well as needed to ease digestive woes and this is where fiber supplements come in.
The truth is fiber supplements are readily available and super effective at inducing bowel movements if your child has not been getting a lot of fiber in his or her diet.
Give your kiddo plenty of water
Needless to say, proper hydration is also very necessary for normal bowel movements.
That being so, if your kid has been constipating and he/she has not been drinking an adequate amount of water, get ways of having them take more water- consuming water may trigger bowel movement.
Also, if your child is using fiber supplements, it is important to have them improve their intake of water..
Put another way, whether your child likes it or not, they must take water in order for fiber supplement products to work effectively.
Give fruit juice
If your kid can’t take enough water no matter how hard you try (or how creative you get), try to give him/her some fruit juice.
However, it’s good to be mindful of the type of juice because not all juices alleviate constipation.
So you want to give your son or daughter a few feeding bottles of apple, pear, or prune fruit juices-These juices contain sorbitol which helps greatly in softening stool and make it easy for your child to pass stool.
· How to relieve child constipation fast – Medication for constipation
Use a stool softener
One primary cause of constipation in kids is dehydration- it causes hard stool.
Consequently, you may consider giving your child a stool softener (pediatric prescriptions are available).
Now, stool softeners help moisten the stool by pulling water from your child’s intestines, making stool exit their body more easily.
For chronically constipated babies, some doctors recommend using corn syrup like Karoo -usually around 1 to 2 teaspoons per day- to soften the stool.
Try a suppository
Another remedy for stubborn constipation is suppositories.
Rectal suppositories again help encourage bowel movements by softening stool.
Other physician recommended stool softeners /laxatives
- Wellement’s Baby Constipation Support– babies 6+ months
- Pedia-Lax® Liquid Stool Softener– Great for occasional constipation (not for kids below 2 years)
- Prunelax Ciruelax – Children from 4 years.
- Mommy’s Bliss baby elderberry drops (Organic)- babies 4 months+
- Fletcher’s root-beer flavored liquid laxative– kids 2 to 15 years (causes bowel movement in about 6 – 12 hours)
How to help constipated child fast- Other constipation medicine for kids
If the problem is due to the accumulation of fecal waste/material (this creates a blockage), doctors typically suggest laxatives or enemas such as GlycoLax and MiraLax to help clear the blockage.
You can also try a mineral oil laxative (for children above 6 years).
Be sure to consult your kid’s pediatrician before giving the above medicines.
· How to treat constipation in child naturally
Encourage your child to do simple exercises
If your kid is at an age where they’re a bit active, try to make your kid do little exercises like walking maybe around the compound.
This can do the trick because it encourages bowel movements by increasing blood flow throughout the abdomen.
If your kid is still small and can’t walk or do any exercise, try to give them a colonic massage..
Research has shown that an abdominal massage is helpful for constipation relief since it helps to remove gas, blockages, and waste.
It also reduces abdominal fluid thus improving overall digestive health in your little one.
Watch this YouTube Video to learn how to perform a Tummy Massage on a constipated toddler.
Encourage regular toilet time
Children are funny at times, they can literally ignore their “long call “which can cause constipation, and therefore it’s good to encourage your child to use the toilet on waking up (in the morning) and after every meal/snack.
Also- and this can be particularly helpful when it comes to a younger child- you may get better results by telling, not asking.
For example, instead of asking “Do you want to use the bathroom now?”, simply say/command “Hey little- it’s time to rush to the bathroom”.
How to help kids with constipation -Conclusion
Even though constipation is uncomfortable for kids, it’s rarely a sign of an underlying condition.
And the best part is that there are many ways you can help your son or daughter if they are having constipation issues- we have talked about a lot of them including natural methods such as tummy massage.
One final thing: Never give your kid a laxative/enema without the pediatrician’s OK- it can be quite dangerous.
Happy constipation-free day to your baby!