Navigate Life Texas: Resources for kids with disabilities and special needs

Navigate Life Texas: Resources for kids with disabilities and special needs

Constipation Help

06/13/2017 | Published by: Sharon Brown

Many children with disabilities have an issue with constipation. It is one of those things most of us deal with, but somehow it is also one of the hardest things to talk about, even with other moms. Yet it is a daily struggle that many of us face with our children. 

Here are some things that I have learned and do to keep my child comfortable and healthy:

The first, most important step is to find a pediatric gastroenterologist (GI) for your child. My child has a follow-up visit with her GI doctor every 3-4 months. She prescribes my child’s constipation medication and nutritional supplements. 

I make sure to do my best to keep these appointments, otherwise things could get bad quickly and we may have to do the dreaded colon cleanout. I also make sure that she gets her medications as scheduled.

Another mandatory step is to make scheduled visits to the bathroom. Important times will be at wake-up in the morning and right before going to sleep at night. It is also a must to have your child go to the bathroom after meal and snack times. 

Remember, your child should sit for no more than one minute per one year of age. So, at 12, my child should not sit on the toilet longer than 12 minutes. Make sure their stay is not too short, either. Sometimes it takes a few minutes to get things going.

Here are a few more things that are helpful.  

  • Get your child moving. Walking, crawling, or even bouncing are all helpful aids in digestion and elimination. 
  • Sometimes if my daughter is having a hard time going I will have her sit in a warm Epson salt bath. This helps to relax her stomach muscles. 
  • Make sure the child’s feet can reach the floor while sitting on the toilet. If they are not, put a stool underneath them. This helps with pushing and leverage. 

Hopefully, these tips will help you keep your child more comfortable.

You might find other helpful tips for medical issues on the Diagnosis & Healthcare on this website.  

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