Children’s Bowel Problems Treatments
Constipation in children can usually be relieved by making changes to your child’s diet and drinking habits. It can also be helpful to chart your child’s bowel movements by using a bowel diary. This may help your GP or Healthcare professional to assess what is causing constipation.
Using a bowel diary will help you to establish whether your child is suffering from constipation, which is classed as less than four bowel movements a week. This diary can also be used to encourage children into a regular habit. Children can often forget or ignore the symptoms to go to the toilet, which in turn can stretch the rectum, decreasing the sensation and urge to go even further. By combining the diary with diet and lifestyle adjustments you will be able to see whether this improves your child’s condition. It will also be helpful to show this to your GP or Healthcare Professional so they can assess if any further treatment is necessary.
You can download a bowel diary here.
Lifestyle, Fluids and Diet
It is important to make sure that your child is eating a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fibre and drinking enough fluids as this will help to keep bowel movements soft enough to pass through. Keeping kids active will also help to stimulate the digestive system and keep it in natural working order.
For more advice on Lifestyle, Fluids and Diet click here.
If diet and lifestyle changes doesn’t make any significant changes to your child’s constipation then you may be prescribed laxatives to helps. There are two types of laxatives:
Macrogrol Laxatives such as Movicol which help to soften bowel movements
Stimulant Laxatives such as bisocodyl or senna which encourage peristalsis in the bowel
Your child might be given a macrogol laxative to maintain a regular bowel habit.
In instances of severe constipation and medication has found to have no affect, children can undergo a procedure called ACE (Antegrade Colonic Enema). Surgical procedures to treat constipation are very rare but this can help improve the condition for those severely and chronically affected.
This procedure involves creating a continent stoma from usually the appendix but can also be from the small bowel. A small artificial opening in created low down in the abdomen or through the belly button. A catheter can be inserted into the stoma and a washout solution injected to carry out a controlled bowel movement.
Further information and downloads can be found in the downloads section.