18 Month with Constipation

Updated on May 21, 2013
T.H. asks from Beverly Hills, CA
10 answers

My little one is constipated. Its so bad it woke him up last nite. I've been giving him Miralax in the bottles but I think its so big, it can't get out. Do I have to do an enema? If so how? Do I do the enema and have him mess in a diaper somehow? I am so clueless

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answers from Los Angeles on

I agree with calling the pediatrician.

Other than that I would try juice first...apple and prune juice has always worked wonders for us.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from New York on

Have you called your pediatrician? I would start there pronto!!! My daughter, now 3, still suffers major constipation. My pediatrician said dto up the Miralax dosage to the adult dose. Then again, your pediatrician might say something different. Personally, I wouldn't do an enema without consulting the doc first. I'd rather have a mess in a diaper than a constipated kiddo any day.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Appleton on

Lots and lots of water.

The Miralx can become like concrete if you don't give enough water.

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answers from Miami on

One thing that helped my kids was giving them several ounces of watered down prune juice every day. It was just enough to help the bowel movement be a bit soft so it easily came out.

Part of the problem for an 18 month old is that if the BM is hard, they will hold it in for fear of pain. That just makes the constipation worse.

You want to give fiber, but not too much. You want him to have plenty of fluids. You don't want to give him food, like cheese, that is binding.

Sometimes the BM is liquid behind a solid and hard portion. That is so miserable! Even an emema doesn't necessarily help that.

I would take him to the doctor on Monday if he hasn't had a movement by then, and get the doctor/nurse to help you.

Good luck!


answers from Columbia on

When my LO was around 2 or so, she started getting constipated too. Mostly it was because she just didn't want to poop. I started giving her a sippy of V8 Fusion juice every day and it totally kept her regular. Doesn't matter the flavor, let him pick it out. They love it and it does the job. It's not a quick fix situation, but it should get him "smoothed out" over a few days. ;) Good luck. I know that's miserable.


answers from Boston on

You've got 2 problems - one is dealing with this, and one is preventing a recurrence.

So you can do a suppository to help stimulate things and to soften the stool. Also put him in a warm tub to relax the muscles. Put in a bunch of toys or something new - funnels and measuring cups from the kitchen are nice and new. He may poop in the tub but that's okay. He's probably holding it in at this point because, as much as it hurts to keep it in there, it hurts more to have it move. You may have to get in there with a gloved finger and/or an enema. Talk to the pharmacist about the best one. Try to have you child lie down and be distracted - this is a good time for TV or a movie if you have to! If you can take a laptop into the bathroom, that's better. If you're in front of the TV, cover the couch with a plastic trash bag and some towels, or a plastic shower curtain and towels. If he'll go in the diaper, fine, but be prepared for an overflow. If you can hold him over the toilet as someone else suggested, fine. This may be a 2-person job.

You really don't want to be giving a child miralax all the time. For now, avoid bananas and pears, rice, applesauce, dairy and especially cheese. Add fruits and water water water. If you give starches, do it modestly and use whole wheat and brown rice - no white products (no regular pasta, white rice, and no white potatoes). No processed foods. No juices with a lot of high fructose corn syrup. Prune juice is good if he'll drink it, but prunes are better. Apple juice makes some kids poop - it's not a good idea usually because there's no nutrition in it, but for now it might work. Apples, grapes (cut them up small), etc. are good. Watermelon is good because it has a ton of water in it too.

Preventing it in the future is about diet and also about safe supplementation. I have a friend who had chronic constipation and so did her little one - no problems now. Once you get through this episode, I'll be happy to advise you further. But you want a food product made for kids and not all the miralax and not even pure fiber which is made for adults and isn't that great an idea anyway, not when better alternatives are available.



answers from Portland on

One of my brothers was often constipated 50 or so years ago. Mother just put her finger in and pulled it out in pieces or gave him an enema. Back in the day parents didn't rely so much on doctors. It's a simple thing to just dig it out or give an enema.

My daughter has done the same more recently when her son was a baby. Distasteful but less expensive and less dramatic than a trip to the doctor's. One time when he was staying with his aunt he screamed so loud and long trying to poop that she called 911. The ambulance tech put on a rubber glove and pulled the poop out. Takes no skill and even when faced with the situation someone less trained than a doctor did it.

You can buy enemas in a bottle. No need for equipment. And these days you can put on a plastic glove if you don't want to touch it. How old is he? If he's a baby, toddler or preschooler lay him on his left side, I think it is, insert the enema and hold his butt cheeks together. When he's ready to poop, after 5 minutes or so, hold him over the toilet and let go of his butt cheeks. Tricky I know but it can be done. And older child can hold the liquid in on their own. Have them stay laying down so that it's easier to hold it. If you buy a bottle it will have instructions on it. The brand I've used is Fleet Enema.

You can also try a glycerin suppository. You can buy them in the drug section of the supermarket or a drug store. They make child sized one.


answers from Rochester on

I think for now you need to consult with his ped on where to go, but I want to offer some advice for the future.

My now three year old has suffered with chronic constipation most of her life, due to the nature of her GF diet. She drinks a ton of water, eats prunes, etc...and still, always constipated. We were on and off Mirilax for over two years, and that poor little thing still hasn't potty trained out of fear for the toilet...

But then, my ped recommended Fiber Gummies. Why in the world she didn't recommend these before, I don't know...but I took my 3 year old off Mirilax, have been giving her two gummies a day, and she's been nice and loose and regular ever since.

I bought them at WalMart...a month's supply for around five dollars. They are made by Fiber Advance and are especially for children, and are all natural. Your little one is perhaps a little young for whole gummies, but you could cut them up into little pieces and give them. Please try it...I wish my doctor would have told me about them years ago.



answers from Chicago on

I've used Pedia-Lax which are liquid suppositories. You insert the end and squirt as much of the fluid in as you can. You will have a BM in a couple minutes. I'd recommend putting him on the toilet if he is ok with it - using one of those little potty chairs so he doesn't have to use his muscles to hold himself up.



answers from Portland on

I recommend when this is over to figure out what the constipation is from. But, in the mean time, you can do what others have recommended, but you can also use a glycerin suppository to make it "smoother" so it can glide out better. I recommend the the chunk ones instead of the liquid, because the liquid is in a plastic bottle, and you have to insert the nozzle. If you have to use that kind, then you need to use a lube of some kind. Shortening, petroleum jelly, coconut oil, or KY type products all work well.

I went through this with my daughter. I pulled it out when she screamed and was actually bleeding at the anus. It is no fun, but it does help! Get some latex gloves you can throw away, it makes it much less icky! if you can.

Miralax is a great way to go. After we got over the constipation, caused by soy and cow milk, we gave it, a whole adult dose, everyday for 2 weeks so that going poop no longer hurt so she wouldn't hold it in with fear. This is what the pedi said to do and it sure did make a difference.

Oh, warm baths can really help get things moving too. But, if its too big, you need outside measures. Good luck!

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