After doing some research it seems she has a condition called Encopresis as she is now straining to go without success but soiling her pants quite regularly. I know this could have a root problem of a lot of changes in her life (including a new baby, her brother recently potty training and some issues at school) but we now really want to help her sort this out on all levels.
As an immediate solution my husband wants to give her an enema, I'm not sure I'm ok with it but we need to relieve the 'blockage' and then deal with the other issues she is going through.
Does anyone have any experience with this? I'm really quite desperate as the poor thing is suffering and I can't bear her being so stressed out about it as it's really starting to affect her.
Thanks in advance!
We have been dealing with this for a few years now.
This is usually a result of holding in stool and after awhile they cant really feel when they have to go anymore. I keep my daughter going regularly with a tablespoon of milk of magnesia (MoM) every day with a big glass of warm milk as per both my GI and out family doctor. If she goes more than 4 or 5 days without pooping I give her a glycerine suppository. I find a suppository a little nicer than an enema. Make sure to leave it in at least 30 -60 min so it melts and softens the end of the poop.
Without the MoM her stools get rock hard when she holds them in too long, but with it, it will stay soft even if she is holding it in for a few days. We tried everything, fiber, more water, elimination diets, everything. This is the only thing that works, as we beleive the problem to be completely psycological. She just hates pooping and feels the need to hold it in. Its so frustrating, but someday she will realize its more trouble than its worth.
Sometimes we go a month or so with her pooping daily, but she always regressed back to holding it in, usually after we travel somewhere for a few days.
I live in France and don't think there is such a thing as milk of magnesia here but may ask if someone can bring some over for me. I know now (through doing a lot of research!) that this is just a short term solution so we need to work on it a bit. I'm also trying out a couple of homeopathic remedies (First Silicea which seems to match then Sulphur it that doesn't work) and hoping we won't have to result to any other intervention.
When I think back she has suffered from this for quite some time but very intermittently. As I mentioned, we've had a lot of changes in our lives over the past year or so so it may stem from there...
Thanks so much again!
The pharmacist should know what it is. It probably has a different name. They usually keep it with the antacids as its good for heartburn too. . Its pretty gentle as a laxative in that it doesnt cause severe cramping. It just pulls water into the stool making it softer.
Our 5 year old son also struggles with this. I am working so hard at helping him to have regular bowl movements. He has some myralax every morning in water. (Our doctor recommended it until he starts doing it on his own) and I have him sit on the toilet at the same time every day. Some days he poops, other days he says he doesn't have to go and I have him try again later.
I am feeding him as much fiber as possible and prunes. He loves them.
Part of his problem is that his colon is compacted (hopefully not as much anymore) with poop and we didn't know it until recently. It is not a fun thing to deal with.
Anyway, good luck!
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I've also been giving her homeopathic remedy Sulphur (after doing some further research) 9ch for a few days and when she complains her tummy is hurting and she's been having a poo every day for a week now - no complaints, not hurting, without us prompting...
I would urge any other mums struggling with this to try it as a cure as we have been struggling with this problem for about 3 years - previously my daughter would not go for 3 days and always enormous ones which now I see was part of the problem!
Give it a go!
We have not had this same issue but just wanted to share that our chiro suggested epsom salts baths as the salts are magnesium sulfate and magnesium can be absorbed through the skin (milk of magnesium is a liquid form that you drink). While we use it to relax the muscles all over, it also has the effect of loosening stools if the skin absorbs a fair amount. You could try putting about a 1/2 cup of epsom salts in her baths and see if that helps.
milk of magnesia is a solution of magnesium hydroxide. it helps relieve constipation. you're not supposed to use it long term unless your doctor says so, but it can really help when you've been stopped up for a long time.
if you have long term issues and need to retrain the bowel a daily dose of Peg 3350 (sold under various names like Lax-a-day, restoralax, miralax, glycolax) is suggested by a few pediatricians i know. it's a white powder you mix into any beverage. you want to have soft poops daily for a long time so the bowel heals and learns to respond to normal needs.