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my 5 year old daughter is still pooping her pants please help me out?

post #1 of 52
Thread Starter 

i have a 5 year old daughter and she is pooping her pants every day , and has been for the past 2 and a half years and i still have not found out what to do about it. i have been to doctors and all i have been giving in movicole and that is not working for her. 

i have to clean her pants at least 5/6 times a day and i am getting very sick and tierd of doing this. she goes and hides around the house and pushed her bum cheeks together and forces her self not to have a poop please can anyone tell me anything about this condition she smells very bad and is making my whole house smell very bad. PLEASE PLEASE help me out!!!

post #2 of 52


sorry to hear that you have to suffer and your daughter as well, really sorry. I am actually working with kids with this problem (I am a doctor), it´s called encopresis,  please pm me, if you want further information


Hugs, Trin

post #3 of 52
Thread Starter 

Thank you i have PM you.


if anyone else is suffering from the same problem or has any idea about what can i do please let me no

post #4 of 52

We had the same problem with our DS until very recently. He is almost five. For over two years he would use the toilet if he wasn't wearing trousers, but poop in them if he was wearing any. He didn't seem to believe that it was possible for him to change this. We finally figured out that he found the toilet uncomfortable to sit on, and bought him a comfy potty chair, and also a child toilet seat for using at kindergarten, where they only have an ordinary grown-up toilet. This led to a break-through.


Before that we tried everything we could think of, including rewards (which we were not happy with, but willing to try out of desperation), letting him sit on the toilet at specific times of the day (after meals), making sure he drank lots, giving him lots of smoothies with crushed linseeds... trying not to let him notice how desperate and sick of it we were getting!


Btw my sister's daughter refused to use the toilet until she was five, when suddenly she was ok with it and started using it without any problems.


Good luck! :)

post #5 of 52
Thread Starter 

i have tried all of that. she is just refusing to go to the toilet, i dont no what to do with her anymore nothing is working for us.

post #6 of 52


Edited by mothermetta - 9/26/12 at 10:07pm
post #7 of 52

My son (almost 6) suffers from encopresis.  My best advice, I suppose, is to find a doctor who is familiar with it and go from there.  The university hospital near us has a clinic devoted to this problem and, after a 6 month wait, we got in with them.  There, he sees a GI doctor and a child psychologist concurrently--one manages the physical aspect of his encopresis (she palpates his abdomen, manages his stool softener dosages, et cetera) and the other addresses the behavioral aspect (prescribing a certain number of "potty sits" per day, practicing with him how to relax his pelvic floor, talking with him and us about school, pooping, and a lot of other things).


We began seeing them about 7 months ago, and we see them every 2-3 months (more frequently in the beginning).  At this point, he takes a stool softener (Miralax) daily and has 3 prescribed "potty sits" per day.  We keep a chart of every time he sits, every time he poops (and how much, what it looks like, et cetera), and every soiling accident.  


At this point, he is pooping on a pretty regular basis (every day almost without exception), but almost never without being prompted by us.  He has "smears" occasionally, but not daily.


Good luck--I know how frustrating this can be.

post #8 of 52
My almost 6 year old has encopresis, so I feel your pain. He'll go some time w/o pooping in his pants, and then will start it up again. Very frustrating. You say it is a pain to clean out of her pants (I know that very well), but what about using pull-ups? I do when we are on longer outings, or out of town - b/c I know it will be worse than when we are at home. People might say by using diapers/pull-ups that it's only encouraging this behavior, but those people maybe don't realize it's likely to happen whether or not he's wearing underwear... and since DH or I are the ones who have to clean it up, I am goin to make it as easy as possible.

The good news is that it wot before forever. Baring a more serious medical problem, kids who have this issue eventually outgrow it.

You've gotten good advice about seeing a specialist and trying stool softeners and frequent toilet sitting. Hope it gets better soon. I'm always working on not getting upset with my DS, b/c really, most of the time it's not something he has much control over (or it's too late once he realizes).
post #9 of 52

I think it might be ok to use the flushable diaper liners in her underwear. They are made of rice paper or something and would make the clean up easier.

post #10 of 52

Maybe it is as simple as something like she doesn't like the messiness of wiping herself.  Maybe she doesn't want to go in the toilet because she doesn't want to wipe and get poop on her hand.  You could try just letting her know that it's OK, and you will help her wipe her butt and then let her take a bath after. 

post #11 of 52



I can 100% feel your pain. I have totally, totally been there. My son who is 6.5 is just now finally getting over stool withholding. I say that with only a bit of faith because I know he could very easily having a relapse. it is so tiring and frustrating. At its worse I felt like my whole day was resolving around this terrible problem. It was like this black cloud over our relationship. And I said some really terrible things to my son I would not have normally said because I was so darn frustrated. Before I completly understood what was going on (and even a bit afterwards) I tried every positive and negative tactic in the book. Nothing worked.) We eventually ended up in the ER for constipation. I actually took him to Patient First for a stomach ache and they thought he was very really constiatipated and made us go to the ER. he really wasn't really all that constipated. But his bowels were really stretched out from all that withholding for all those years.


The first thing we had to do was a total cleaning out of his bowels. His bowels were very distented so much to the point he could no longer really feel he even had to go. It takes a while for the bowels to heal especially when its been going on for so long. We had to keep him on miralax for a long time. But the hard part was finding the right dose. The one doctor I  took him too (who I really disliked) had me giving him way too much and he was having the runs. That was terrible. I actually ended up taking him to our homeopathic doctor who gave me another thing to give him and I discontinues  the miralax for a while. (I can't remember the name of what he was on at this moment. It had a mild laxative property to it.) The point with the stool softner is it has to keep the stool soft and bulky (but not runny) so the stool has to come out and can't easily be held in by the child. 


The other key is to have your daughter sit on the toilet at a regular time each day. After meals is best because its a natural time for the body to want to empty itself. We found having him sit after dinner (or before bed) the best for us. He has to do it no matter what. If we fail to make sure he sits on the toilet after dinner, he will start having accidents again (well he is started to go all by himself during the day now.) My son loves video games so the best thing for him to want to sit on the  toilet is letting him play the ipod or the DS. He will gladly sit on the toilet for a long time if he has a video game. So find something that works for your daughter so toilet time has a little perk to it. (I know lots of people read books to their kid on the potty but I got to the point where I couldn't\didn't want to read books to him in the bathroom for such a long time.) In the beginning I would usually have him sit for at least 10 minutes but with the video games he would gladly sit longer.


If she poops in her pants you know there has to be more poop that needs to come out. Especially if its just a little poop in the pants. Especially make her sit on the toilet on those times. To keep my stress level down with the accidents, what I taught my son to do was to go into the bathroom and "take care of business". I would have him put his dirty pants in the bathtub and then sit on the toilet. When he was all done I would wipe him (often just put him in the shower) and then deal with the mess. Somehow just having him take his cloths off and set the toilet up himself was less stress for me because I don't need to go in there for a while. At first I would always be the one to notice he had an accident. But slowly he would come to me and tell me he had one. Then he slowly would say he had an accident but really he didn't- or it was just a tiny tiny mark in his pants. It took a while but his awareness slowly improved to now he will run to the toilet all by himself before he has an accident. 


You will probably need to keep her on stool softerners for at least 3 or 4 months (to let the bowels heal as well as help break the holding habit) and when you take her off of them do it kind of gradually so she doesn't relapse. We are past the point of having him on miralax every day but if he has an accident or if doesn't poop after a day or two I will give him just a bit of miralax to keep the stool the right consistency. watch out for vacations, holidays, anything stressful and be prepared for relapses then! 


Please PM me if you want to talk further about this. Good luck. Try to remember your daughter is more then just this problem and try to do some cuddling with her and things that make you remember how much you love and cherish her. Because this problem is so trying on us moms. 



post #12 of 52

P.S. There is some testing\blood work you might want to have done to rule out medical reasons that lead to constipations. I think it was for thyroid and celiac they tested my son for. I can't remember for sure. Usually with stool withholding it starts with a case or chronic experience of constipation which leads a child to think all pooping will be painful, so they hold it in to avoid pain, cause more pain, and its a horrible cycle. 

post #13 of 52

Not fun for child, or mommy. My daughter started right after potty training she use to hold it, than become incontinent, backed up, and get it every where.

Now she is almost ten, the only thing that has gotten better is she cleans up and does not smear it (obviously because shes older) she insists that she can't feel it or smell it and rarely has control. I spend about 30 dollars a month on underwear for her, have to spend my days cleaning up poop....pasty , sticky hard to clean poop, and worst of all my poor little girl is becoming an emotional wreck. I fear her friends will smell it and that will be the end of her happiness. We have been to a gastroentologist who just said to keep with the miralax which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't....we have cleaned her out, done enemas, exlax...e few days later the incontinence comes back, will it ever end? Its been a long 7 years of this.(since she was potty trained)@ 3 yrs/old.

post #14 of 52

one of my 5 yo has this problem too. about a year ago i had had enough of the constant accidents and all that that entailed. so i told him he HAD to sit on the potty everyday and asked him when/what part of the day he wanted that to happen. he chose after breakfast (which turns out to be a perfect time for all of us). i asked him how long he wanted to sit- he chose 4 mins (in reality i knew it didn't matter what he said, he always goes a few mins after sitting down, and he'll stay there for 30+ mins if i let him). so he and i signed it and he chose to hang it on the fridge. he always brings something with him to do (toys, paper and pencils/pens/crayons, my ipod, etc). as long as he sits everyday he is accident free, save for the rare incident. i think he probably needs to be on a gluten free diet, but i'm afraid of taking that plunge (he loves crackers and bread...and not much else....). 


another thing, when we started potty time, it was actually a relief for my boy. he didn't want to be having those accidents anymore than i wanted him to, you know? it helped him feel better about himself i think. there were times when he protested a bit, but it was non-negotiable. i still have to usher him to the pot, and he actually went ON HIS OWN one day, which was the first time *ever*.


at the LLL conference last year there was a guy there from soiling solutions. might be another option for you to look into.


post #15 of 52

Your story is exactly the same as mine except my daughter is 6yrs old.Im about to get a 3rd opinon from the medical profession.I would really appreciate any advice that you can give me...

post #16 of 52

I have no real advice for you only empathy. My daughter (and previously my son) struggles with this too. Over the years we have bought lots of books, seen the pediatrician, tried Miralax, tried rewards, slipped in to negative cycles, given up and ignored the problem hoping it would go away, etc. It really, really sucks for kid and parent. I have seen (and posted) many threads about this subject over the years, and have to say you got the best responses ever on this one.

post #17 of 52

My dd has struggled with this. Besides miralax, our ped. said to eat graham crackers/those British cookie biscuits (soft fiber), grapes, fruit juice, water etc, that  encourage soft poops and avoid bananas, cooked carrots and dairy, which constipate.   We can see on dd's face when she is withholding.  I make her go sit on the toilet.  I also make her try to have a poo, if she soils.  I usually talk to her about relaxing and not withholding.  I get her books to read to help her relax and have something to do.  We also encourage the sitting on the toilet after eating.  We found the miralax caused more accidents and made her stools too loose, so we stopped giving it to her.

post #18 of 52
Has anyone had incontinence as well as encopresis? That's what were dealing with. The Drs think it's related but I don't know. Dd is about to turn 7 and the encopresis has been under control for a while now (after 3 years of stool softeners). Desperately looking for answers.
post #19 of 52

It been about 2 years since my son has been pooping his pants and cant seem to figure out why he is doing this. He is doing the samethings as ur daughter

like hiding around the house and he always says he sucks it back in. I thought it may have been his meds but the side effects dont match for

what he is doing. I read ur story and it kind of made me feel a little more relief that im not the only parent out there with this situation. sometimes

he does it 3 time within 2 hours, its driving me crazy. He is only 6 years old. If you can please give me any info of what they told u that would be


post #20 of 52

just want to chime in and say how grateful i am to see i am not alone. My son is over 5 now. sometimes he is fine, sometimes he smears, sometimes he does a load. I have gone from screaming my brains out (very ashamed, no hate comments please) to bribing to praising...bleh.


I have to say, "poopy time" as we call it works. Sometimes he goes again...but a set part of the day is great. We do not have constipation problems, just incontinence.


anyways, its freeing and a relief to know i am not alone. That's what so great about MDC.



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