Read about constipation in children, symptoms
and causes of constipation in babies and treating constipation in
Constipation in Children
Constipation in children is quite common and normally cures itself
and is not to be worried about. However, chronic constipation in a
child certainly needs medical attention. Symptoms of constipation in a
- Bright red blood passing with stools.
- Child crying or screaming during bowel movements.
- Child resisting or avoiding toilet training.
- Doctors may also check child's rectum or order an x-ray of your
- Fewer than 3 bowel movements a week.
- Loss of appetite in the child.
- Stomach pain and bloating.
- Stools are difficult to pass.
- Stools are hard, dry and larger than normal.
If these symptoms persist for two weeks or more than your child is
suffering from chronic constipation.
The common causes of constipation are:
- Child does not take healthy diet with enough fiber that includes
cereals, grains, fruits and vegetables.
- Child doesn't drink enough liquids including water, milk and
- Children who eat a lot of candies and desserts that have more fat
and refined sugars may not be having enough fiber resulting in
- If the child is sick or is taking certain medicines, he or she
may become constipated.
- Switching the baby from breast milk to baby formula or cow's
milk and then to solid food may result in constipation temporarily.
- Young children often try to ignore the urge to have a bowel
movement so that they do not have to interrupt play or go and ask
the teacher or use the public restroom. Hence, stool builds up in
the lower bowel and becomes harder and larger, resulting in painful
passage. The pain and hurt may terrify the child and he or she may
want to avoid having a bowel movement again.
Parents should keep a check on the child's bowel movements so that
you can tell your pediatrician about the exact problem why your child
is constipated. The things that you should keep a tab on are:
- Time when the child sat on the toilet seat.
- The duration of the child using the toilet.
- How stools of the child looked like.
- Whether the child has been soiling his or her underwear
- Any unusual changes in your child's stools or behavior are also
to be mentioned to the doctor.