Track Your Child’s Bowel Movements to Help Solve Their Constipation
When you track your child’s bowel movements it will help you to figure out what helps and what makes their constipation worse. When your child is chronically or functionally constipated, it is frustrating and exhausting for both them and you. It can also be very hard to figure out what interventions are helping your child to overcome their constipation and what regiment they need to be on to go 1-3 times a day.
Write down the doses you have given your child, the number of bowel movements that resulted and where the bowel movement falls on the Bristol Stool Chart.
Safe and effective remedies for childhood constipation relief
There are many natural interventions that you can use to help your child go daily. I do not recommend using Miralax. Miralax is not approved for use in children under 17 even though many doctors prescribe it for their pediatric patients. Over 25,000 reports of adverse events have been reported from Miralax use to the FDA. My son had serious side effects from Miralax after it was prescribed by his pediatric Gastroenterologist. If you are interested in learning more about Miralax please read my article, Is Miralax Safe to Give to My Child?
Magnesium for Constipation Relief
Magnesium works as an osmotic. It pulls water into the colon softening the stool. When you get too much magnesium, the stool is very soft or liquid and you expel the stool and the extra magnesium. No matter what type of magnesium you use, it can cause dehydration, so please make sure to drink lots of fluids.
There are many types of magnesium. Magnesium in supplements is generally bound to another ion. What the magnesium is bound to, impacts how much your child’s body will absorb.
What type of magnesium you should use depends on your goal. With a constipated child, we have two goals. Our first goal is to use magnesium to produce regular bowel movements. Our second goal is to increase our magnesium stores in our child’s body so our child is no longer magnesium deficient.
As you dose your child with magnesium, the dose necessary to achieve a bowel movement can change. Tracking your child’s dosing and bowel movements can help you to find a dose that works for them.
For more information on magnesium for constipation please read my article Magnesium for Constipation It will guide you through dosing and what types are most effective to help your child.
Constipation Relief in kids from Vitamin C
When you get too much Vitamin C your body expels the excess through a bowel movement similar to how it does with Magnesium. C-Salts are buffered Vitamin C and they also have some magnesium and potassium which are helpful for constipation. This is a powder so you can mix it in water or juice. It is effervescent so if your child likes soda or other fizzy drinks, this might be a good choice.
In some kids, taking Vitamin C for constipation works really well, but for some, it causes very acidic stool. This leads to burning when the child has a bowel movement and rashes from the acidic stool touching your child’s skin. Tracking how much Vitamin C to use to get soft, easy to pass stools but not get liquid stools is very helpful.
Coconut Oil for Constipation Relief in Children
Another good option for constipation relief in children is coconut oil. Coconut oil is my favorite oil for constipation relief in children.
Coconut oil is rich in Medium Chain Fatty Acids. MCFA boost your metabolism which makes the stool pass through your intestines faster. The oil coats and lubricates hard, old stool and it softens the newly formed stool making it easier to pass.
There are many ways to use coconut oil. Instead of using other oils in your cooking or baking. you can use coconut oil. You can use it instead of butter on toast or veggies. Some kids just eat it directly off the spoon. It has a mild, almost sweet flavor.
But, it can be tricky to get enough coconut oil into children who are struggling with constipation just by subbing it for other cooking oils. Especially in children with sensory issues or autism or ones who just don’t like the taste of coconut oil. One of the easiest ways I have found to get children to eat enough coconut oil to relieve constipation is with my Chocolate Coconut Oil Poop Candy.
Tracking how many candies your child has eaten and what effect they had on their bowel movements can be very helpful in finding a regiment that works for your child.
For more information on making a nut butter version of the coconut oil candies, please read my article Dash’s Special Treat.
My children’s book, Dash’s Belly Ache, is a book for children who can’t or won’t poop. The star of the book is Dash, a border collie pup who won’t poop. His doctor gives him a special treat in the book that helps him to have a bowel movement. The recipe for the treat is in the book and also in this article. If your child is struggling with constipation, withholding or is resistant to pooping, Dash’s Belly Ache is a helpful tool to add to your arsenal to help them overcome their struggle. You can buy Dash’s Belly Ache on Amazon.
Track Your Child’s Bowel Movements
When you are using magnesium or other interventions, it is very important that you track what you are giving your child and how it is working. It seems like you will remember how much magnesium or Vitamin C or how many Chocolate Coconut Oil Poop Candies your child had last Tuesday when they had 2 great BMs, but the reality is that it is very hard to keep track of everything in your head.
It is helpful to track what you are using and how effective it is and any potential side effects your child might experience so you can decide if you need to try something else for your child’s constipation. I would also write down where your child’s bowel movements fall on the Bristol Stool Chart. The chart will help you determine if your child is acheiving a normal stool.
Your child should ideally be having 1-3 bowel movements daily. If they are going more than 2 days without having a bowel movement, you need to increase the dose you are giving them or try something else to induce a bowel movement.
You can keep a diary and list dosing and bowel movements or make a chart to track it yourself.
Free Tracker to Track Your Child’s Bowel Movements
I have a free bowel movement tracker chart that you can download and print off a copy for each week. It will help keep you organized and will give you insight into what works for your child.
Click on the link to receive a Free Bowel Movement Tracker Chart to help you find a plan to manage your child’s constipation. The bowel movement tracker has the Bristol Stool Chart and a chart where you can write dosage and track your child’s stools.
I would be diligent in tracking until you find a regiment that works for your child. You can also take this tracker to your child’s doctor. This will help them so they can see what you are doing to treat your child and how it is helping. It may give your child’s doctor insight into their constipation.
I would like to invite you to join my Facebook groups People Against Miralax or Natural Constipation Solutions for more information on how to treat constipation and for support on your journey.
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*DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A DOCTOR OR MEDICAL HEALTH PROFESSIONAL. ALL IDEAS DISCUSSED AND DESCRIBED IN THIS POST ARE MY OWN AND ARE NOT MEANT TO TREAT OR DIAGNOSE. IF YOU HAVE A MEDICAL CONDITION PLEASE SPEAK WITH YOUR DOCTOR.