Constipation is generally described as having fewer than three bowel movements a week. Chronic constipation can cause people to strain excessively to order to have normal bowel movements. This can be especially distressing for kids as bowel movements may hurt and the child may try to avoid it. Constipation can be alleviated with the introduction of probiotics.
Factors Contributing to Constipation
- Ignoring the urge for toddlers to visit the toilet due to engagement in entertainment
- Early toilet training as toddlers are holding in their bowel movements longer than they should
- Insufficient fiber rich fruits and vegetables or fluid in the child’s diet.
- Allergy to cow’s milk or the consumption of excess dairy products
- Side effects of certain medications
- High fiber foods such as fruits and vegetables can help with the formation of soft and bulky stool. The recommended intake for dietary fiber is 14 grams for every 1000 calories in the diet. This would be approximately 20 grams of dietary fiber per day.
- Drinking sufficient water is important.
- Setting a fixed time to use the toilet after meal can help. Provide a footstool so that your toddler has enough leverage to release the stool.
- Remind your child to answer to nature call on the first urge. Children can be very engrossed during entertainment time which will cause them to withhold their bowel movements.
- Reward your child for their effort with little rewards. Do not punish a child that has accidentally soiled themselves.
- Taking of probiotics to restore the balance in gut microbiome.
What are Probiotics?
Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that can promote a healthy gut system in the body. They work by decreasing the number of bacteria in the gut that often cause infections or inflammation. The most common strain of probiotics comes from the Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus rhamnosus family. Probiotics have anti-inflammatory properties that can help with maintaining the balance and suppressing the growth of pathogenic (bad) bacteria in the gut.