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Constipation in toddler - what else could it be?

(9 Posts)
m0therofdragons Tue 22-Apr-14 23:24:26

dd3 is constipated and has been since weaning. She would sit in her high chair or now she kneels on the floor and wiggles up and down in circular motions. When she does this she goes into her own world and you cannot talk to her as she won't hear until she stops, then she is fully coherent again. We let he be until recently as although it was odd, she wasn't seemingly in pain but a few weeks back she started to leaving going to the toilet until the last minute and had a few wee accidents after being dry since November. She complained her tummy hurt a lot and was cranky and off her food. Also only pooing every fourth day and really straining when she did finally go.
She was on Lactolose for 14 days and was much better, 3 days after coming off it she was back to square one. GP has put her back on lactolose for 4 weeks and then he wants to see how she is when she comes off it. If no improvement he will send her to a specialist.
I am sure it's not her diet, firstly because she has lots of fibre and drinks well (especially since we found out the problem), but secondly, she has an identical twin who has the same diet and they really drink the same etc. Her twin has no sign of constipation.
I've been googling and Cerebral Palsy comes up - higher risk for twins and prem babies which dd3 ticks both boxes for. She was born at 36weeks (so not massively prem) and weighed 4lb 6oz. However, I really can't see she has any other symptoms but I don't really know much about it. Is there anything else I can do to help her or is there anything else that could cause it?

FunnyFoot Tue 22-Apr-14 23:32:25

The constipation is not something I can give advice on sorry.

However the first part of your post made me think epilepsy. Not wanting to scare you OP and I am no doctor but the vacancy you describe does ring this bell for me. Along with the inability to poo. I know it sounds daft but epilepsy can be triggered by a lot of things such as light, temperature and emotion. Given that your DC shows vacancy when trying to poo could be a factor.

I would push your GP for a referral as there appears more to this than constipation.
As I said not an expert just have a little 'life' knowledge.
I hope things improvethanks

IHaveSeenMyHat Tue 22-Apr-14 23:35:55

Constipation in babies and children is really, really common and there is often no explanation for it other than a sluggish bowel which improves as the child gets older. If your GP refers you to a specialist that's great - my DD sees a gastro consultant every 4-6 months and they're great at keeping on top of meds, etc.

I expect they would recommend Movicol instead of Lactulose. In my experience it's really unhelpful to take a laxative for a short time before stopping, because like you say, this puts them straight back to square one. Movicol is the sort of treatment you would expect to be on for months and years rather than days and weeks. That might sound alarming but I'd take the meds over my child being constipated and in pain any day.

These instances you describe of her "spacing out", I'm trying to put this delicately but do you think she finds it pleasurable? Again, loads of little kids discover that certain acts feel nice, much to the horror of their parents! I hesitate to use the word masturbation (because that implies a certain degree of sexual awareness) but that is essentially what it is.

IHaveSeenMyHat Tue 22-Apr-14 23:39:39

I see FunnyFoot has a totally different suggestion to me - i guess it depends whether this "spacing out" behaviour is something she does when she's trying to poo (I must say I didn't get that from your post) or something she just does sometimes.

m0therofdragons Tue 22-Apr-14 23:48:26

I don't think she's enjoying it but I've read that somewhere and have considered it. Hadn't considered epilepsy as I always think of that as full on fits which is stupid as I know someone who had spacing out ones - she was old so I hadn't linked the two... okay now I'm going to worry more but I would rather have what to look for so I know what to say to GP to give a full picture.

FunnyFoot Tue 22-Apr-14 23:49:41

Sorry. As I said my experiences are not everyone's and I didn't want to scare the OP.
Actually I think I will report my post for deletion it may cause unnecessary upset.

Sorry again.

m0therofdragons Wed 23-Apr-14 00:17:28

No honestly it's a good call and ties in with cp. Don't worry I'm not going to panic. Dd is fine but actually that would make sense so it's something to check and hopefully rule out. If it is epilepsy then the sooner it's identified the better. I'm not going to take a mumsnet diagnosis I just wanted thoughts of what to look for and I don't think I've actually mentioned the spacing out vacant look as I'd just thought it unimportant but a bit odd. It may be just an odd thing dd does or may be more serious. Your post is helpful and something to check.

FunnyFoot Wed 23-Apr-14 00:25:00

Thank you for seeing a different point of view and not taking offence (rare on here smile)

It is only because I tend to work exclusively with people with epilepsy and you tend to notice signs for example extreme emotion and constipation are but a few. I suppose if I look hard enough I can see it everywhere. smile

Update if you can OP take care thanks

m0therofdragons Wed 23-Apr-14 13:45:05

We're on lactulose for 4 weeks so update will be after that.

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