Constipation in babies and children
When a child is suffering from constipation the problem can usually be remedies with the specific dietary changes being made. However, there are times when stool softeners might have to be used while the person waits for these dietary changes to take effect.
Constipation is frustrating for adults and children. For babies it is an annoying problem as well, especially because they cannot speak yet and tell their parents of the symptoms that they are having.
It is easy to tell, however, if a baby is constipated, because the parent will see how regular their stool is and what the texture of the stool is as well. If the baby is not having regular bowel movements, then it is probably constipated.
Some common causes of constipation in children are low fiber diets and a lack of fluid intake.
When using a stool softener for children, the parent needs to be extra careful and really more on natural remedies because they are much safer.
Stool softeners for babies
A baby will most likely become constipated because they are mostly breastfed or being given formula. Breast milk results in soft stool because it is easily digested. Sometimes babies that are breastfed will only have one bowel movement a week. However, even though this baby is not having regular bowel movements, it is not constipated either.
Usually soft stools are nothing to worry about in babies. A safe stool softened for babies is milk of magnesia. Since it does not have an appealing taste, the parent might have to mix it with juice for babies.
Stool softeners for children
If the child does not have a bowel movement in days, then it is possible that he child is constipated. The nature of the stool will determine whether the child is constipated or not, with children who are constipated usually passing large and hard stools.
Usually their bowel movements will be painful as well.
In this case, waste materials will pile up and chronic constipation can occur.
A good stool softened for children is polyethylene glycol 3350 and it is often prescribed for children, because it is odorless and colorless and can be mixed with water.
Metamucil is also a good stool softener. However, a commonly used remedy for adults such as corn syrup is not recommended as a stool softener for children because it has certain risks that are associated with it.