constipation in children is often not adequately treated by doctors

Constipation in children is often not adequately treated by first aid doctors according to research published in the journal Pediatrics.

Constipation in children is often not adequately treated by doctors
Constipation in children is often not adequately treated by doctors

The study looked at 119 children aged two to seven who, apart from suffering from constipation, were healthy. These children consulted 26 different first-aid doctors complaining of constipation. A survey of physicians before the study showed that they thought they had successfully treated over 80% of cases of constipation in children. However, after two months of treatment, which usually consisted of laxatives and laxative softening the stool, nearly 40% of the children still suffered from constipation. Because of these findings, Borowitz and colleagues suggest intervening earlier and more aggressively to treat constipation in children before it becomes a persistent problem.

Constipation in children is a common problem

According to the researchers, 3% of consultations among pediatricians relate to constipation. According to other sources, the incidence of constipation problems in children could reach 28%, but only a small percentage gets medical help. Some parents may not realize that the child has a problem. Some older children may be embarrassed to talk to their parents. Another reason is that there is a wide range of scales of what is considered normal for stool frequency. However, the general standard is that infants should produce stool three times a day and that by the age of four, the child should have a bowel movement once a day.
In this study, a child is considered to constipate when bowel movements less than seven times within a two-week period, but other factors such as bowel movements are also discussed. Hard and painful motility. After several days without bowel movements, other symptoms may occur, such as gastric cramps and distention, reduced appetite, fecal contamination, and irritability.

When we talk about constipation, we usually refer to functional constipation, constipation without signs of underlying disease.

There are several common causes that cause functional constipation. A previous study from Borowitz revealed that painful motility is one of the leading causes of constipation during early childhood. Dr. Mark Feldman, director of community pediatrics at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), calls this the pain-retention cycle: “Children dread the painful passage of stools if they are constipated and hold back as long as possible, which contributes to constipation. Other causes of constipation are unbalanced diet, insufficient fluid, diet changes, the impact of a disease, the side effects of medications,

The causes of constipation in children are often dietetic

In industrialized countries, we consume far too much food without residues and low in vegetable fiber (meat, pasta, starchy foods). Easily digested, they reduce the amount of stool and slow down their progression in the intestine. Children are often constipated because of their diet.

In case of essentially dietary cause:

  • offer him very often to drink water, from time to time a fresh fruit juice without sugar or trade, 100% fruit juice;
  • give him at least a green vegetable or crudity at each meal; a cooked fruit or two raw fruits;
  • from time to time, pulses or spinach;
  • alternate wholemeal bread with white bread;
  • give him milk or low-fat dairy products;
  • from time to time offer cooked prunes or rhubarb stew with little or no sweetness;
  • avoid sweets, sugary drinks, syrups, and chocolate;
  • avoid the rice, except the whole rice;
    and finally, avoid banana, quince and cooked carrots.
    If these measures are insufficient, a doctor should be consulted. He may propose certain drugs that accelerate or promote intestinal transit.

To know :

Constipation may also be caused by a child who refuses to use the toilet: an exciting activity that holds him back, shyness outside, fear of dry toilets, a too rigorous method of acquisition …

In all cases, a constipated child who suffers must be treated.

It is necessary to know that the majority of the pains of the child are linked to constipation.

And constipation in a baby?

Constipation in case of breastfeeding

Exceptional. However, it can exist if you do not have enough milk, you are constipated or that your food hygiene is not enough: eat more fiber (vegetables, fresh fruit, etc.).

On the other hand, be aware that transient constipation is often observed during weaning.

Constipation in case of formula

Use for baby bottles very mineralized water like Hepar.

Also, know that some milk favors the transit, your doctor will be able to advise you.

Do not abuse flours.

Are you sure you give him enough?

Check the dosage of milk powder. Too much milk can be involved.

Constipation during dietary diversification

If your baby is constipated during this time, it may be that you are not giving him enough fluid, that you are giving him too much low-residue food, or that you are mixing too much food while he is eating. Small pieces.

How to prevent and treat constipation at home

There are several simple things parents can do at home to promote healthy bowel movements in their children or to treat the warning signs of constipation:

  • Encourage the child to drink plenty of fluids, especially water and juice. Prune, pear and apple juices can be particularly useful.
  • Encourage the child to eat a balanced diet, which includes whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Encourage the child to exercise for at least 15 minutes every day.
  • Educate the child by giving them the facts and use positive reinforcement when the child has regular bowel movements.
  • Encourage the child to try, without pressure or force, to have a bowel movement after each meal, to take advantage of the usual urge to a bowel movement.

How doctors can treat constipation

If home remedies such as those listed above do not improve the child’s constipation, parents should seek medical attention. In 1999, the North American Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition prepared guidelines for first aid physicians to evaluate and treat constipation in children. These guidelines recommend treating functional constipation through a three-step process:

  • Eliminate all stool accumulated in the intestines with oral medications, enemas or suppositories. This is called fragmentation.
  • Establish a regular and straightforward cycle of defecation using laxatives softening stool and laxatives.
  • Prevent re-occurrence, through education, by going to the bathroom regularly, using positive reinforcement, ensuring that the child’s diet is balanced, consuming enough fluid and doing certain exercise.

Dr. Feldman agrees with this three-step process and also emphasizes the importance of consuming fiber: “It’s often difficult for parents to convince younger children to eat a lot of fiber. However, fragmentation, stool-softening laxatives and a diet with a high fiber content and sufficient fluid intake are the mainstays of the treatment. ” The results of the recent study also demonstrate that, although the most common treatment used by first-aid physicians is laxatives softening stool and laxatives, the most effective treatment is fragmentation, to begin with, followed by laxatives or laxatives that soften the stools daily.

Chronic constipation

Persistent or chronic constipation may be the symptom or result of more serious underlying diseases, such as hypothyroidism, salt imbalance, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, cerebral palsy, mental retardation, or the plan of the spinal cord. When constipation is chronic or complicated by another disease, the emergency physician should recommend consultation with a specialist, such as a pediatric gastroenterologist.

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