Jump to content

Poo trauma


  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 Feral Melody

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:52 PM

Hi everyone,

My son is 4 in July. We started toilet training him last year, and he has been weeing well pretty much since day 1. Poo, however, is a huge problem. He has a tendency to hold on to it, causing himself constipation and great discomfort. It's not unusual for him to go once a week. We have tried bribery, reading him stories while he sits on the toilet, taking him to the GP, giving him Actilax, increasing his fibre, increasing his water and so on. All to little avail.

The worst part about it is that he screams the house down when it is poo time. My otherwise sweet natured son becomes a shrieking banshee. I'm sure half the street can hear him screaming and me losing my temper.  He would seriously rather poo his pants than sit on the toilet.  It can take anywhere from half an hour to an hour to get him to push it out when it's apparent it's coming. We feel like we've tried every tactic in the book to get him to be more relaxed about poo. It is something we've been dealing with since July last year (!) and I really want to sort it out before his little brother/sister arrives in October!

So tell me, what are your tactics for dealing with poo evasion/constipation?

#2 roses99

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:57 PM

I don't know the answer to your question, but my dad is a child psychologist and I know he's worked with small children who have anxiety issues around doing poos, like you've described.

Have you spoken to your GP? Maybe he/she can give you a referral to a good child psych who could help with a few strategies.

He's not likely to need more than a session or two, but it could be really helpful to get some strategies and for your son to talk through his concerns with someone who can help him.

FTR my dad uses puppets and drawing therapy when encouraging small children to open up, so it's not like traditional counselling.

#3 TwiceThe Woman

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:58 PM

Sorry to be brief and gross but does he see Mum or Dad "going"?  as to be there with you or his Dad gives them confidence that all will be ok.
If you've already tried that, have a little friend come over who is also TT and ok with then pooing part - he will soon copy.
Good luck and hope this situation resolves soon OP.

#4 Tesseract

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:04 PM

This was me as a kid. Turned out bananas really bound me up and made it hurt, once bananas were cut things were much I got over the anxiety.

#5 soapy

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:04 PM

DS would hold on and still does sometimes. Also only doing one poo a week. My GP told me to use Parachoc. I would use it if he hadn't been for a couple of days. Another GP told me that his bowel will need to be retrained to go more often and to use Parachoc until he would go once a day. I thought that was a bit extreme so would just do it every three days. He now goes once every two to three days. I had to explain to him that it makes it harder to go if you hold on.

#6 Feral Melody

Posted 06 May 2012 - 10:46 AM

TwicetheWoman - yes, he has seen us on the toilet doing our business. He often comes in to talk to one of us while were in there!

Tesseract - he doesn't eat bananas unfortunately :S.  We're being mindful to increase his fibre and water intake, so have got him to eat prunes and apples. That seems to do the trick in making him more regular, but he will still resist the urge and scream the house down in the process.

Soapy - we've tried that with Actilax. Like you, I also think it's extreme to give it every day. Have explained that do him as well that the longer he holds it, the harder and more painful it is.

Roses 99 - thanks, I'll give that a shot. The last GP I saw regarding this wasn't hugely helpful so I will take him to the one I'm currently seeing for my pregnancy as she's proactive in giving referrals and offering alternative suggestions.

#7 Milamum09

Posted 06 May 2012 - 10:56 AM

My DD was having the same problem. Then we introduced Psyllium husk sprinkled on her muesli and yoghurt each morning and have seen a huge improvement. It doesn't hurt to poo anymore and she therefore doesn't hold onto it causing her to be more constipated. She is now doing a nice soft poo every day. It was horrible to see her in pain every time she did a poo. She used to hold onto it so much she would only do it in her sleep when she was fully relaxed. Good luck.

#8 claptrap

Posted 06 May 2012 - 10:57 AM

Hi OP

I don't know which state you are in so I won't post a link to the Victorian site, but the Continence Foundation of Australia has various links and resources on their site - there may be some ideas there to assist.  I've found their materials very helpful in the past; admittedly a different situation (DS has SN).

It sounds as if your DS has both some physical issues but more the psychological fear, so obviously helping him along with plenty of fibre and fluids is going to help, but perhaps not be sufficient alone; you'll need some other tools and suggestions to help him get over the barrier he's building in his mind.

I wish you well with it - poor little chap, no fun for you or for him.

#9 MySpunkBubbles

Posted 07 May 2012 - 01:48 PM

Hi,
I wish I had the answers - but I can only share some insights from my experience/journey with you.  DS1 turned 4 in March of this year and he has been having toilet trouble since January 2011. There's a long story (and, no doubt a therapist would have a field day with hearing my re-telling of the last year-and-a-half) but we have, at times, had him taking Movicol, Parachoc and Osmolax).  He had an X-ray and it showed significant faecal loading.  We have changed his Paediatrician and the new one seems to be a better fit for us (and the situation).  He now has Osmolax and Parachoc on alternate days and the Paed has referred us to a Gastroenterologist and she wants us to start seeing a Psychologist (we have those appointments in the next few weeks).  Whilst I am anxious about it all and find it VERY CONFRONTING, I am willing to go to the ends of the earth (and back again, if I have to) to help him.  I'm sure your situation is dfferent to ours (and I don't tell you about it to add more worry) but I wish I had done more, sooner.  I spent a lot of time, floundering around or just not being confident that we were doing all we could to help him.  The great thing is that there's a lot of people who have replied to your post that have been able to sort it out quite quickly and easily.  I hope that's the case for you, too!  

My advice to you is as follows (and like all advice, some of it will be useful and other bits will be a "crock"):

* Trust your instincts - no-one knows your son as well as you do - does your gut tell you that it's something that needs more (or less?) medical assistance?
* Easier said than done (I know) but try not to put too much pressure/emphasis on it. We tried to teach our son all of the steps (starting with him going into the bathroom, pulling his own pants dow and sitting on the toilet (because we thought we might want to copy the other kids at day care and be able to do it himself)but one thing we learnt from taking him to the OT was to try and break things down into smaller tasks. So we just focussed on getting him to do one big poo every day, and not worry if he did it in his nappy (i.e., forget about the sitting on the toilet bit).
* It is best to get this sorted before his bowel/colon gets stretched - though that can take a long time to happen. If it DOES get stretched, it CAN be sorted but it can take a LONG time
* Apparently, it is OK to treat "withholding" quite aggressively with laxatives (I was worried about long-term use of laxatives and any damage that could be done - but apparently, there is a greater risk of long term damage/stretching of the colon if kids with faecal loading are not "cleared out")
* We found Osmolax to be the easiest type of laxative - it apparently has no taste, so can be dissolved in any drink.  You can buy it over the counter at chemists (but you may have to ask for it)
* When we give him Parachoc, we mix it with his yoghurt (let him choose the flavoured yoghurt that he wants the chocolate-flavoured "medicine" to go in)
* Make sure you are happy with the Dr that you are seeing - they're like any other service or tradesman - if you're not happy with what thay are doing (or telling you, or if they don't seem to be on the same page), go see someone else
* We have a few books that he sometimes asks us to read. We started just having them around the house and, after he showed an interest in them, we would read one to him  He will sometimes ask us for one of them, now:
"Even Firefighters go to the Potty" (but we change it to "Even Firemen go to the Toilet");
"It Hurts When I Poop" (this one is about a boy who is scared to go to the toilet, because he is afraid it's going to hurt. His parents want to help him, so they take him to see a Dr, who tells him a story about a coyote named Bill, who doesn't get rid of his rubbish, so his house gets so full the walls start to stretch, bulge and shake.  He decides to get rid of all the rubbish and sees how much better it is.  He gives himself a reward at the end of it.  After the Dr finishes the story, she asks Ryan if he wants to take care of his rubbish/poo.  She tells him about a "Poo Program" that teaches him about foods to make poo go hard or soft, plus some other things he can do to help.  My DS still asks us if various foods will make his food go hard or soft)

All the best with things!

Edited by ninjamummy, 07 May 2012 - 02:00 PM.


#10 Feral Melody

Posted 15 May 2012 - 08:34 PM

Thanks everyone! Some really good advice and I'm glad to have different ideas to try out.

Most recently we've tried to distract him from the pain. We sit him on the toilet and read a story or sing a song and try to make him laugh instead of us losing our cool. Although he still cries a lot, the screaming is less.  We got him to poo on the toilet twice last week so hoping that this is the thing that eventually works for us.

The in-laws had him yesterday  (they babysit him every Monday) and said that he was showing signs of wanting to do a poo, but they decided to "leave it to us as they didn't want to deal with it", by which time he had lost interest and the urge to do it. I found that really frustrating to deal with!




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Teaching our son to say no to violence against women

Today, on White Ribbon Day - and every other day - we're teaching our son to say no to violence against women.

Mothers told to breastfeed in 'spacious' toilet

If there is one thing the owners of Tillings Cafe can be certain of, it is that the eatery won't win the award for Britain's best baby-friendly coffee shop any time soon.

Mother gives name to son dumped down drain

A woman who admitted to dumping her newborn baby down a Sydney drain has reportedly been allowed to give him a name.

Taking small steps to reduce stress

Are you feeling used up by life's stress, family problems and a demanding job you can't turn off? Many people are way beyond work-life exhaustion. They are functioning as robots.

Bad news: we're running out of chocolate

The world's biggest chocolate-maker says we're running out of chocolate.

Born at 23 weeks, 'Chopstick Baby' survives first week

A baby who was born at 23 weeks has survived her first week of life outside the womb.

Manic stations: the nesting instinct in pregnancy

It might sound like temporary insanity, but almost obsessive nesting as you near your due date isn’t uncommon – even if you’re not usually a particularly clean person.

How a baby can survive alone for days on end

The baby found abandoned in a Sydney drain may have been alone for up to six days without being fed, leaving many asking how he could have survived.

When it begins to look a lot like Christmas

A child's excitement at Christmas time is a beautiful thing, but one dad ponders whether his toddler daughter is getting into the festive mood a bit too soon.

Hospital lets dads the experience some of the pain of childbirth

A new experience is radically altering men's views of childbirth.

Italian doctors questioned over formula bribes

Italian police have placed 12 doctors under house arrest on suspicion of promoting baby milk formula over breastfeeding.

Heartwarming prank gives single mum the house she was hired to clean

Cara Simmons arrived at work to clean a large and beautiful house in time for a party planned for that evening. It was soon hers.

Those special moments of sibling bonding

Every now and then your child does or says something that is truly memorable.

Why we should stop telling new parents to 'enjoy every moment'

A few weeks ago, some dear friends of mine had their first baby. As the proud dad texted me a picture I had to fight the natural instinct to say “Enjoy every moment!”

Baby monitor footage posted online

Footage of Australian babies and children sleeping in their bedrooms are among the images on a Russian site showing live feeds from thousands of homes and businesses around the world.

Did this new dad really hit on his wife's midwife?

Was there really a man who was actually there by his wife’s side as she laboured and gave birth to his child, all while he was making what he perceived to be meaningful eye contact with a midwife?

Keep calm and ignore the Tantrum Trolls

Tantrum Trolls are a small but growing species of predatory bottom-feeders who delight in picking on parents at their most vulnerable.

It's okay to never 'get over' the death of a loved one

The death of children, siblings, and parents has long term impacts on the rest of our lives.

What Mark Latham needs to know about depression and motherhood

Love has nothing to do with mental illness. But love may drive a mother to do something about it.

'We're just trying to keep our child alive': life with FPIES

We have a beautiful seven-month-old son, and his allergy rules our life.

Transgender dad breastfeeds his babies

A transgender man who breastfed his first baby - despite having his breasts removed as part of his transformation from female to male - has now had a second child.

Couple face $1 million medical bill and bankruptcy after babymoon birth

A Canadian couple were slammed with a million dollar medical bill after their daughter was prematurely during their babymoon.

Cigarettes, junk food dominate supermarket sales growth

One in every five dollars spent at supermarkets goes on cigarettes or junk food, according to industry data.

Teacher under fire for breastfeeding in class

There is no doubt mums have a right to continue breastfeeding after they have returned to work, but one teacher in the US has taken it to the extreme.

Win a family pass to Disney Live!

We have 4 family passes to give away to see Disney Live! presents Three Classic Fairy Tales, touring Australia this December/January.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Join PADDINGTON on the red carpet!

To celebrate the release of PADDINGTON, we are giving five lucky winners the chance to win a family pass to the exclusive Australian Premiere in Sydney on December 7!

The tragedy of losing a favourite teddy bear

We were green and uninitiated, perhaps a little naïve when it came to the favourite toy responsibility.

Video: Baby sniffs beardless dad to make sure it's him

She looks him up and down and then touches his chin, but baby Lindsey still isn't sure this clean-shaven man is her dad.

It's possible to workout while pregnant

Medical experts say intense fitness routines can be done safely during pregnancy - if the mums-to-be follow some guidelines.

What parents really want for their kids

Are our hopes, dreams and expectations for our children what they really need?

'I had a feeling something was seriously wrong'

Before even giving birth, Katie Myers' maternal instincts warned her something was wrong with her baby.

When your pregnancy causes a relationship rift

Some dads-to-be don't miss a beat when their partner is pregnant; others struggle with a range of issues and can become withdrawn, right when their support is needed most.

Couple uses group photo trick to announce pregnancy to loved ones

Katharine and Kris Camilli devised a clever trick to immortalise their family and friends' reactions to their exciting pregnancy news.

Why Tracey Spicer has given up make-up

"After 30 years on television, I had become what I despised: a painted doll who spent an hour a day and close to $200 a week putting on a mask."

Knowing you are one of the lucky ones

I am secure, confident and strong, but the responsibility of protecting my children can almost bring me undone.

Why I am so emotional now I have kids?

There are so many ways in which parenthood changes us as women, but one of the most noticeable, for me, has been the changing state of my emotions.

Baby survives despite sharing womb with 'foreign body'

Baby Maia was conceived against the odds, only to find she was sharing a womb with an ominous "foreign body".

Video: Baby shows dog how to jump - or vice versa

They say dog is man's best friend, but this playful pooch seems to have chosen a jumping baby as her number one buddy.

10 ways to soothe a crying baby

New paernts can get frustrated when their newborn gets fussy and can't settle down. When you're feeling overwhelmed, try some of these simple tips to help soothe your baby.

20 baby names that are becoming more popular every year

The data-lovers at nameberry.com have been at it again – this time, they’ve discovered the names that are continually rising up the ranks, ready to take out some top spots in the next few years.

10 great meals to make for new parents

Ideally, you want to give food that isn’t expensive to make, isn't too difficult to create, and freezes well; stews, bakes, soups and pasta sauces are perfect.

Weird pregnancy products

Some pregnancy products come to market and are just awesome. Others just leave you scratching your head.

Carers admit to force-feeding children

Twin brothers have become dads on the same day ? with their partners giving birth in the same hospital, and even the same birthing pool.

 

How many weeks til Christmas?

On your To-Do list

Get the "Santa" shopping done without the kids in tow.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.