Constipation in Children
Constipation represents hardening of the stool and difficulty passing the stool. The frequency of bowel movements decreases in constipation. Constipation is a common problem in children and may be caused by emotional factor. Diarrhea and constipation may occur, if a child is emotionally upset or going through negative phase. When a child doesn’t drink enough water, milk and other fluids it will most likely result in constipation. Low fiber diet and diet rich in refined sugars can also cause constipation. Some children temporarily experience constipation due to illness or certain medications. When you switch your child from baby food to solid food or start to give cow’s milk instead of breast milk constipation may begin. Fortunately, there are different natural remedies that can help in dealing with this problem.
Natural Laxatives for Infants
Breastfed babies may pass the stool after every feed or every 7-10 days. Formula fed babies have a poo every 2-3 days. The same applies to older children. If you notice your baby suffers from constipation consult a pediatrician but you may try certain natural laxatives to solve this problem. If your baby is older than 6 months, try altering the diet and incorporate fiber sources such as fruits, vegetables, cereals and grains. You may give you child some prune juice which can be diluted in water or mixed with other juices. Also, you can give your baby 3 table spoons of stewed prunes or apricots. This should be given 3 times a week.
Natural Laxatives for Children
If your child is constipated, there are many things you can do to help.
If a child doesn’t drink enough water or other fluids, colon takes water from waste material and gives it to the body. This causes the stool to be hard and leads to constipation. Your child must drink plenty of fluids because the more fluids it drinks the more fluids will be placed in bowels which will soften the stool. Diet rich in fibers also requires extra water intake.
Balanced diet is essential for regular passing stool. Foods rich in fibers such as broccoli, beans and peas should be included in everyday menu.
Liquid glycerine may be inserted into baby’s rectum to stimulate bowel movements. Glycerine suppositories are usually used for severe constipation in children.
Psyllium husks are actually fine psyllium bran flakes that are served sprinkled on cereals. This natural laxative can also be combined with fruits and yogurt and one teaspoon is enough for softening the stool.
Flax Oil and Flax Seeds
Flax oil is rich source of omega 3 fats and natural laxative. Dosage for infants is one teaspoon per day and for older babies two teaspoons of flax oil. Flax seeds are excellent source of fiber and can be given in combination with cereals or other high fiber foods.