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Toddler poo phobia - any suggestions?

(10 Posts)
InmaculadaConcepcion Fri 09-Nov-12 20:16:32

DD (2 going on 3) has been withholding her poo and panicking about it for well over six months now. It's very common for her to go three days before she's forced to let it go and of course by then, it's pretty large (although still reasonably soft - she eats a lot of fibre, dried fruit etc. and drinks plenty of fluids - her anus never looks sore or torn).

A recent attempt at potty training was totally derailed by the poo problem. She cracked potty use for pees very quickly and was happily and efficiently weeing with no accidents. But once she needed to poo, she stopped wanting to sit on the potty at all because she was scared of doing it - then we had wee withholding and accidents (which she hated because she dislikes being wet).

We've now backed off the potty training and gone back to nappies, but the poo withholding continues.

I know this is a fairly common problem, so I'm wondering what others found helpful in this situation? I try and appear relaxed about it all - but it does worry me. Ideas welcome!!

frootshoots Fri 09-Nov-12 21:59:37

Has she said why she withholds it, it hurts her etc? DD is 3 and went through this phase a few months ago, saying that it hurt... Well it would after being inside you for that long!

One really daft thing I did, but it worked, was to tell her that the little baby poo inside her tummy wanted to go into the toilet so that she cold flush him down and he could go and see his mummy and daddy in the pipes grin i even gave it a voice and was asking DD to 'let me out please, i wont hurt!' ....she went for it!

Worth a try? Desperate times... Desperate measures!

unexpectediteminbaggingarea Fri 09-Nov-12 22:12:39

yy, 'poo goes to pooland'. it's funny, honestly.

We have had problems with DD since potty training, where she wouldn't poo on the toilet at all, and held on to it (1 little pebble in 8 days) and was obviously in pain. She also started having wee accidents again, I think because the sensation was all over the place.

We went to the GP after the usual tricks didn't work and have been given movicol, which has worked after 48 hours, because it's kept it so soft that she can't hold it in really, and then it comes out so easily that she seems to be getting over the fear. Coupled with rewards and praise for it, and I'm really hoping we're seeing the end of it now, although I'm not sure what will happen when she's not having the laxitive.

I do sympathise, it's horrible.

ditsydoll Sat 10-Nov-12 02:04:41

My DD went through this before she was even out of nappies, she would hold her poo in for days.

It all started when she became a little dehydrated after a nasty vomiting and diarrhea bug and ended up with constipation, which then resulted in a small anal tear god love her and after that it was a nightmare.

I was worried about potty training but she took to weeing on the potty really quickly but as she was frightened she just wouldn't go for a poo. After having her on lactulose to try and make the poo as soft as possible she seemed a little better and I always found that having a little chat or taking a story book into the loo with us helped.

She is now 3 1/2 and goes absolutely fine.

InmaculadaConcepcion Sat 10-Nov-12 12:23:36

Thanks for those thoughts! Love the Baby Poo idea - I tell DD something similar, but think I'll modify it.

I'm considering a laxative - might well consult the GP about that.

The poo phobia predates the potty training, but until she's more comfortable doing her poo full stop, I think potty training is likely to be torpedoed by it again....

From what I gather, DD dislikes the sensation of doing a poo - I think she experiences discomfort when she's gone a few days because of sheer size, but the stools are still soft. No signs of pain, but she squeaks a lot when defacating - and she dislikes having her nappy changed afterwards as well.....

anothercuppaplease Sun 11-Nov-12 11:35:03

I know it's a bit tmi but I let my kids flush the toilet when I had poos... I would explain that it was going to poo land (great book) and we said goodbye to poos. Then they couldn't wait to do a poo on the big toilet!

thegreylady Sun 11-Nov-12 19:02:23

We used to have poos all going on excursions to the seaside down the pipes and would all wave bye-bye to the poos smile

InmaculadaConcepcion Sun 11-Nov-12 19:04:05

Loving all these anthropomorphic poos...!!! smile

Rhinosaurus Sun 11-Nov-12 19:18:30

I am a school nurse. This is a common issue, your health visitor should be able to help you. No time to post lots of info now but basically this link will tell you most things you need to know.

www.eric.org.uk/Constipation/information_constipation_parents

www.eric.org.uk/Parents/viewThread/2702?PHPSESSID=7214acf0a7bf3757980389980890123c

www.ntw.nhs.uk/pic/leaflets/Poo%20Goes%20Home.pdf

InmaculadaConcepcion Mon 12-Nov-12 19:46:43

Thanks Rhino!

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