February 22, 2010,
A.S. asks from Bellingham, WA on January 30, 2010
1 Year Old Constipation
My 1 year old daughter has struggled on and off for the past year with constipation. When she was 4 months old we had to have her disimpacted it got so bad, it was aweful! Since about 10 months old we haven't had too much trouble because she was very sick in the hospital with a bladder/kidney infection that has had her on antibiotics for the past 3 months. Now that the meds are gone, we are starting to see signs of constipation again, including crying during bowel movements. I'm trying everything I can think of, and plan to see the public health nurse on Monday I'm wondering if anyone else's children have struggled with this! And I am wondering if it's a dairy thing, she's fully on milk now and can't have rice milk so I'm not sure if dairy causes consitpation or if it's only diarrhea when it's an allergy/intolerance.
Any tips or hints would be helpful. We've tried prunes, prune juice, apricots, removing applesauce (because we've read and found that makes things worse), lactulose (we're in Canada so it's the equivalent of the US Miralax) and most recently flaxseed oil each morning.
A.P. answers from Portland on January 31, 2010
He probably killed off all the good backteria in his stomach. Go see Dr. Sarah Whiley at Kwan Yin healing Arts, she helped my son with a very similar problem. ###-###-#### Good luck
A.S. answers from Eugene on January 31, 2010
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M.M. answers from Seattle on February 01, 2010
I am so sorry to hear about all the pain you and your child are going through. My daughter as struggled with diarrhea from birth to 18 months, and from constipation from them on (she is 3 y.o.)
The diarrhea was caused by the diary products, later from fructose (raisins really help for constipation). Now is under control, but she is constipated.
What helps her go is: lots of raisins, blueberries, and Miralax from time to time.
Since she has other complains, I took her to the pediatric Gastroenterologist to be tested for Celiac. She turned out to be negative. The truth is that there are a lot of false negatives in young children.
Right now, with a lot of information, I am trying an elimination challenge to see if being gluten free helps her. We have been on this gluten free diet for 3 weeks, and i have seen some improvement in some areas, but it takes sometime for the body to heal and recover after being under "attack" from offensive products...
Yes, dairy causes constipation. Try that first, your child doesn't need dairy. There are other milks that are fortified with as much calcium and vitamin D as cow's milk. (Almond, Rice, Hazelnut). We use rice and almond milk. Well, I have read that is the "fat" on milk that causes the problem...but I would give it a try.
That's all I can think right now...I hope it helps.
J.M. answers from Seattle on January 31, 2010
I get one hard poop every other day out of my one year old, even with lots of prunes and fiber. Then yesterday I gave her black beans for the first time. She really liked them. And she's pooped four times since then!
J.S. answers from Seattle on January 31, 2010
We are going through a similar thing with my son, Cole, although it sounds like your situation is a bit more serious since you had to have her disimpacted. Cole has never had very good bowel mvmts, and since he's been on real food, he cries and struggles when he tries to poop. It's gotten to the point that I "help" his poop come out (I feel like a midwife). He just turned a year old, but this has gone on for the last few months. We've tried everything anybody has suggested: prune juice, more fruits and veggies, more water, brown sugar water, cut out dairy (but maybe not for long enough), massage his belly, rectal stimulation, vasaline in his rectum, suppository, reflexology, massage his spinal column... And still having trouble. I took him to Urgent Care on Friday because I was so tired of him being in pain. And on Thurs, I saw some poop that started to come out, then it never did. I needed to know it wasn't something really serious. I had them take xrays, but nothing serious was found. Just a 'moderate amount of stool.' I was relieved that they didn't say 'something is wrong, take him to er,' but I still feel as though something isn't right. They suggested going to a specialist. This week I plan to call a Gastrointestinal Doctor at Children's Hospital or Mary Bridges. We had tried to cut out dairy before, then he had his 9 month doc check up and his doc suggested NOT cutting out dairy, so we added it right back in... So we probably didn't cut it out long enough to see if that was the problem, but he really doesn't eat an abundance of dairy anyway. But as of Friday, we cut out dairy again. The doc at Urgent Care also prescribed a laxative but we have yet to see if that's working. It takes 24-48 hours to take effect. The doc also suggested Rose Petal tea (boil it then add Karo Syrup to sweeten it). Since we started to laxative, Cole has been more gassy, and I think less uncomfortable, but still not the blow-out I expect. If I find out any more useful info from a GI doc, I will pass it on to you :) Good luck with your daughter, It's awful seeing them go through this!
M.L. answers from Seattle on January 31, 2010
I don't think anyone's mentioned this yet... and I can only say that my mom did it with me when I was little and I've done it with my daughter and it usually works within 5-20 minutes. It is to give your little one a warm/hot drink. My mom gave me hot tea (with milk and sugar) when I was little. I've used hot juice, or water, or tea (decaf green) with my little girl. Something about the warm liquid helps.. as hot as they'll drink it (test the temp. yourself first to be safe). We haven't had serious constipation issues... but whenever I thought it might get serious I had my daughter drink hot juice or water or whatever. Good luck that sounds tough.
N.B. answers from Seattle on February 22, 2010
I rep for a green manuf company and we have a wonderful fiber product that also has pre and pro biotics. It would be great to talk with you and see if we can figure out a solution. call me.
D.J. answers from Seattle on January 31, 2010
We have been dealing with that for 6 years now. It did started with antibiotic use, too. What works best for us is Miralax (it is over the counter med and it is save) and probiotics. We used the med almost for 5 years (since he was 6 months), now we use the probiotic only and we have no problem. You can ask your pediatritian to give you the pharmacy equvalent of Miralax as it is works better and it is covered by most of insurances. It has no taste or smell, so you can mix it with anything and I played with the doses until I found the one that worked best for us. It was one third of the prescribed dose. Good luck!
K.B. answers from Portland on January 31, 2010
The antibiotics "killed off" all of the good digestive gut flora. Therefore it needs to be replaced. A high quality pro-biotic is helpful, either in powder or liquid form. Your daughter probably has a dairy sensitivity, so goat's milk or soy milk may be preferable. Find yourself a licensed naturopathic physician who can test for these food sensitivities. Ensure she is getting enough water. There is a food introduction schedule (free) on my website http://www.countrydoc.com under the Home Health section. Many children have elimination problems. Some is due to inherited weaknesses, some is caused by the environment. If you address the underlying causes now, you will really help your child develop a healthy digestive and immune system. K. B