Functional constipation is a common condition that affects kids—and, consequently, causes stress among their parents. A study on Functional Constipation and the Gut Microbiome in Children states that only 60% of kids are symptom-free from constipation after six to twelve months. This prolonged condition causes great distress to kids because it decreases their bowel movements and makes defecation a painful process.
Functional constipation can occur for a long period of time in kids, but you can shorten this period with a few remedies. You can ease the pain and other issues caused by constipation by trying these strategies:
Switch to a gentler milk formula
Toddlers often experience constipation when they switch from breastfeeding to formula or cow’s milk. To ease their transition, you can try a milk formula that’s much gentler for their tummy.
Jordi Riera of Kaeka Americas in Newark states that probiotics and infant milk formulas can be combined to support the gut maturation, intestinal barrier, and digestive health of children. Companies are already developing strains of probiotics that aid in the development of newborn gut microbiota to ensure that it will be effective and safe for kids. On the other hand, you can also feed your child with infant formulas that have human milk oligosaccharides, which are special prebiotics that are naturally found in a mother’s breast milk.
Ease your baby’s tummy with tea
Aside from new formulas, your little one can also be reacting badly to substances with allergens and unsafe ingredients, such as gripe water.
Gripe water is often recommended as a remedy for colicky babies. However, Dr. Chandhi Rajapakshe explains that gripe water contains alcohol and gluten, and can even cause constipation and vomiting in babies. Rather than using gripe water for your babies, you can ease their colic and constipation problems through FDA-approved remedies, such as Babies’ Magic Tea. This tea contains florence fennel, cumin, amd chamomile, which can soothe your baby and relieve their digestive problems.
Give your little one a tummy massage
Dietary changes are a must for babies with constipation. However, you can further ease the symptoms of this digestive condition by giving them a soothing massage.
To start, place your hands on your baby’s tummy or below their belly button. Gently stroke downwards using flat palms, before moving your hands in a clockwise direction. Try to apply it with a lighter pressure, especially if your baby becomes agitated with the massage. This motion releases the excess gas in their stomach and stimulates their natural digestion process.
Consult a healthcare professional
If your little one’s constipation persists after a few days, it’s time to call a pediatrician immediately. This can be hard to do in the US because the shortage of healthcare workers makes it difficult for residents in Connecticut, Arizona, Washington, Hawaii, and other states to get immediate help.
Fortunately, there are now more remote opportunities for nurse practitioners in Washington and similar states who specialize in providing urgent and primary care for families. These remote opportunities make it easier for healthcare professionals to diagnose and treat pediatric patients every day of the week, which can be convenient for parents who need immediate help for their kids. An article on Pediatric Functional Constipation highlights that these doctors can conduct a clinical diagnosis based on your child's history to find the proper treatments. Through the accessibility of the consultations, your child can be immediately prescribed treatments like dosages of disimpaction medicine, prescription laxatives, and stool softeners.
You don't have to prolong your baby's symptoms of functional constipation. Through these quick solutions, you can safely ease the pain and digestive issues that your baby is going through.