Constipation in Children


This is when your child has trouble pooping. They may not do it often enough, and it may be hard for them to poop. Constipation is common in children of all ages. In most cases, it doesn't turn into a serious problem.


What causes constipation? Most often, it happens when a child holds in their poop instead of going to the potty. They may do this because they have not mastered potty training. They may not want to interrupt playtime, or use an unfamiliar restroom. Holding in poop causes the colon to absorb too much water from it. The poop becomes dry, hard and difficult to push out. Constipation is also linked to diet and medicines. And, it can be caused by some conditions, diseases and injuries.


What are the signs of constipation? Your child may be constipated if they poop less than twice a week. Their poop may be hard and lumpy. They may have trouble pooping, and it may be painful. When they use the bathroom, they may say they can't get it all out. They may have a swollen belly. They may wet the bed, and you may see poop in their underwear.


You can treat constipation by giving your child plenty of fiber in their diet and lots of water to drink. Encourage them to use the potty at regular times. If these methods don't work, medication may help. Your doctor will create a care plan that's right for you.