Managing Your Child's Constipation
A Common Problem Mums Face
Your little one means the world to you and despite all the efforts you put in to ensure he gets the best nutrition, you may find yourself getting frustrated over a common problem that many mums face – constipation.
Constipation – as many mums know – is a problem that keeps recurring and can become a vicious cycle. Your baby may start holding his stools in to avoid the pain of passing them out and prolonged constipation may occur.
As good bowel movement is largely dependent on good gut health, it is important that your child eats the right foods and is given the appropriate formula so as to obtain good nutrition to support his digestive system. Because we know that if your child is healthy, he is happy.
What is Constipation?
Constipation is a very common and frustrating problem for babies and is defined by the passage of hard and painful stools for a period that can last for up to 3-4 days without any bowel movement. Once a baby develops constipation and has hard and painful stools, he may hold in his bowel movements to prevent further pain. This creates a cycle that makes constipation a harder habit to break.
Signs and symptoms:
- No bowel movements for 3-4 days.
- Stools are dry, very hard and difficult to pass.
- Abdominal pain or cramping.
- Nausea or loss of appetite.
- Traces of liquid of clay-like stool in his underwear – a sign that stool is backed up in the rectum.
Causes of Constipation:
- Lack of adequate fluids or fibre in the diet.
- Lack of physical activity.
- Premature toilet training that causes the baby to become afraid of the toilet or rebel by holding in his stools.
- Certain medications such as cold medicines and antacids can lead to temporary constipation.
Tips to Manage Constipation
- Ensure adequate fluid intake by increasing the amount of water, soups and diluted fruit juices such as apple or prune juice.
- Increase fibre intake by adding vegetables, fruits, cereals, wholemeal bread or biscuits in the diet.
- Choose afollow-on formula containing clinically proven blend of prebiotics.
- Ensure adequate daily physical activities.
- Consult a Paediatrician if constipation persists.
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