Miralax for kids who hold poop in - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-02-2006, 08:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My ds has been dealing with constipation for a few months now and is at the point where he will hold it in no matter what. Changes in diet, laxative, and encourgagement just don't work. The only thing that has been getting anything out is an enema. Now even that is no longer an option since he screams and hits like he is fighting for his life when we try to give him one.
His ped offered to prescribe Miralax if nothing else worked. I was wondering how well this would work for a 2 year old who is holding everything in.
Does it work by making it so unbearable that he has to poop?
Just wondering if anyone else has been in the same boat.

Thanks
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Old 01-02-2006, 08:41 PM
 
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Have you tried natural alternatives first? Metamucil wafers were a favorite in my house when dd1 was having that problem. Prune juice can be hidden in fruit punch.

Behaviorally, praise praise praise when your ds poops. Make a huge deal about it. Describe it, talk about what color it is, what shape it reminds you of, and then put it in the toilet together and say bye to it. Make him familiar enough with poop that he's no longer afraid of it. The metamucil and prune juice will make it not so hard and painful to come out. Try not to wince or comment about the poop being stinky or yucky. Some kids internalize those things.

Good luck!

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Old 01-03-2006, 01:59 AM
 
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I was almost to the point of trying Miralax with ds. I didn't because I've heard it can cause cramping. He was potty training. I thought dh and I were very careful not to put any pressure on him, in fact it was ds's idea to start using the toilet. But apparently ds sensed something, he was very stressed about pooping. He was holding it in and was just miserable, and so was I. He had a few painful hard poops and decided he just wouldn't go anymore. I tried all kinds of dietary changes. I hated seeing him so uncomfortable and in pain. I was very stressed and anxious about him being so uncomfortable that I think it just added to it all. I put him back in diapers/pullups. I stopped asking him if he had to poop. Or pee. In fact, I assumed the same attitude i had when he was in diapers, totally unconscious of what was happening in the diaper, just changed it every so often, lol. Within 2 weeks he was pooping freely in the pullup. When he went I was very matter of fact about it, or just a quiet "I bet you feel better now". And he just started going in the toilet the other day, on his own.

Also, ds would willingly sit on the toilet to pee, but hold in his poop while he peed. One day he had diarrhea (or he just couldn't hold it anymore), and the poop just came out with the pee. He was shocked but smiled big and was quite proud of himself. That was a big breakthrough for us.
Another thing I did was take him off all dairy, since his poops were always sort of hard, and started giving him more water and juice (not ideal but I was desperate). That helped soften things up alot. My doctor also recommended apricot or peach nectar (sold in a can in the section with refried beans and tacos) But ds wouldn't drink it.

Your situation may be totally different, but I thought I'd share mine for what it's worth.. You can also get a regular stool softener, like Colace, which just softens the stool, without irritating the colon and causing cramping. Your ped may be able to prescribe one, or direct you to an over the counter source, if you end up needing it. Good luck, it's a tough place to be.
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Old 01-03-2006, 03:45 AM
 
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We get this calcium magnesium supplement, it is an ionic fizzy form..it is called cal mag fizz....does WONDERS for poop issues...dh and i now go every day, when we take it! Comes in different flavors...take a serving per day, and the poo will be so loose (not to the point of diarrhea, lower dosage if it gets that far) that "holding it in" is simply not an option! Plus, it being nice a super soft means no pain, no straining, no negative roughness to deal with....there is also another one, with just fizzy magnesium......name escapes me..I would think it would work even better.....

CPST
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Old 01-03-2006, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the ideas. We have tried various stool softeners, but not the magnesium. I will have to check it out.
Nothing seems to be working though b/c even though we are doing everything to keep the stools soft, he is really fighting it and holding it all in.
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Old 01-03-2006, 06:09 PM
 
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I've taken Miralax in the past. It didn't cause cramps for me. I didn't feel any worse than I did from plain 'ol constipation.

My nephew had to take Miralax fairly regularly for a couple of years. What I notice w/ him is that it takes several days to work if he's pretty stopped up, but when it does it causes diarhea. (I particularly remember an incident at 5, where it made him poop his pants at the bowling alley. YUCK!!)

When DS started having problems, I used milk of magnesia and it was much less *explosive*. I gave him 1 tsp at bedtime and it worked overnight to increase the water in his bowel and soften things up.

Good Luck!!
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Old 01-03-2006, 06:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2xan
My ds has been dealing with constipation for a few months now and is at the point where he will hold it in no matter what. Changes in diet, laxative, and encourgagement just don't work. The only thing that has been getting anything out is an enema. Now even that is no longer an option since he screams and hits like he is fighting for his life when we try to give him one.
His ped offered to prescribe Miralax if nothing else worked. I was wondering how well this would work for a 2 year old who is holding everything in.
Does it work by making it so unbearable that he has to poop?
Just wondering if anyone else has been in the same boat.

Thanks
dd2 had constipation issues from the time she was 6 months old. She was exclusively BF until she was 9 months when she started solids. We tried everything, prune juice, lots of fresh fruits and vegi's, fiber like crazy, I watched what she ate, made sure she had lots of water, even tried the metamucil wafers, nothing worked. She got a prescrip for Miralax when she was about 18 months, I gave it to her once a day, usually before bed, and by morning everything passed and she was fine. She never had any cramping or discomfort, no side effects at all that we noticed. She used it daily for about 2 weeks, then we went to an "as needed" basis which lasted about 3 months.

I hope you find something that will work for him - poor guy, it has to be uncomfortable!
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Old 01-04-2006, 01:21 AM
 
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My son has had terrible chronic constipation and the only thing that has helped has been Miralax. He has been taking it now for about 2 years. I am currently in the process of weaning him very slowly off of it because he is now old enough that we can cope with some of the behavioral issues relating to the constipation. It has taken us a long time to get there. I've tried getting off the Miralax 2x in the past but couldn't get my son to do the behaviroal stuff until recently. Lately we've been really successful with good poops 2x a day!

Anyhow - We have had no problems with Miralax. No cramping, no complaints, etc. A determined non-pooper can hold in even the softest poop for a suprising number of days (7? 10?). The thing that Miralax does is helps draw water into the bowel so that the poop stays soft. You may find that a very large relatively firm poop is passed quickly followed (e.g. 5 - 30 minutes later) by a large softer, followed by a large soft, followed by very soft, etc. You may be seeing the same thing with the enema. This is because no matter what, the longer the poop is in the bowel it will become more firm. I don't think the Miralax caused diareah - I think not pooping and passing 5-7 days worth of poop led to some soft stools and blow-puts. Mostly with Miralax my son had soft easy to pass stools on a every-other-day basis.

The problem with chronic constipation is that it is quite painful to pass the hard stools, and also quite painful to hold them. An impasse, so to speak. Using Miralax (or whatever works for you) can help ease the pain of passing the poop and break the cycle. In my reading I think that it is recommended that whatever works (medication or whatever) be used for several months to break the cycle. Then the behavioral things and diet need to be very consistent after that.

Magnesium, BTW, can cause cramping - I'd be careful with it, IMHO. It is very effective in the short term but I don't think it is a good idea for long term use. (E.g. it is used by GI doctors to "clean out" the gut before a colonoscopy)
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