Toddler Constipation

Not going to bother with a witty title. Might as well be honest and you can read…or not. This post is about poop and relatively graphic.

Carter has had soft poo for at least a year. I was always so happy that he only poo’d on the potty because man I would’ve hated cleaning it off his bum. I kinda figured that’s what toddler poo was and didn’t think much of it. When he decided to be a potty user everything went fine. I know a lot of kids tend to have trouble with the pooling part of the potty transition but that was already out of the way for us.

About a month (maybe month and a half) ago Carter started pooling in his undies. It was like he didn’t even notice. I’d ask if he needed to use the potty and he would squeal at me that he had just gone pee and he didn’t need the potty. It was very clear he did. He didn’t do a full poo, it was more of a generous skid mark. Some days was more than other, some days was just the slightest hint. It was always sticky and pain to clean up. Generally it was gross. At first I went through the whole “accidents happen” and reassuring. I tried to talk to him about what was going on. I tried offering incentives if he would take a break and try to poo on the potty before an accident happen. I figured he was too excited to be playing with things and just didn’t want to take any time away.

I should also mention that around this time Carter started saying randomly that his belly hurt. I didn’t think too much of it because it never seemed to become anything. I assumed it was just something he was saying, as toddlers do. Obviously I feel pretty crummy about this dismissal. Hindsight is 20/20.

After a week of that I started being less of the parent I want to be and I got frustrated. I was sick of cleaning up his poop. I was annoyed that he wasn’t trying harder. I couldn’t understand why he suddenly wasn’t using the toilet for poo. Daniela told him that he had to keep his undies clean if he wanted to use Dylan’s new toy kitchen and this is where things spiralled down (for the record, she was just trying to try some other way of reaching him). He not only was pooping in his pants now but he was adamantly denying it and not letting us clean him up. He also had a couple pee accidents which were just so unlike him. We had a group meeting and realized we had to remove the shame and figure it out.

This is where I decided to consult moms.

My mom group suggested he was constipated. I thought this was ridiculous at first because he had soft poo. He eats alright but not a ton of veggies despite my efforts. They directed me to a few articles:

http://www.webmd.com/children/guide/toddler-constipation-causes-treatments?page=3

http://kidshealth.org/parent/emotions/behavior/encopresis.html

All of a sudden it started making sense.

He must have a blockage that is making it so his body doesn’t know he needs to go (also impacts knowing he has to pee). The softness of his stool is because the only poo coming out is that which can get around the blockage. His poor belly was visibly bloated (i don’t know why i didn’t notice this before). I decided to get him in to see our doctor as soon as possible. He of course would not let her touch his stomach so this was a bit pointless. She gave us a few options and we decided we would try a gentle stool softener to try and reset his body a bit and then be more proactive with diet and belly massage/stretching. I considered avoiding the stool softener and trying all natural options first but I think we let this go too far without addressing and I didn’t want to drag it on longer than necessary.

He is on a low dose once a day and it seems to be helping move thing through. We are giving it a few more days and then we will try to stop them and see if we’ve made any progress. He still looks bloated to me. He is finicky about eating and is saying his belly feels “no good”.

We might try to see a nutritionist next. I just feel terrible and I don’t know if this is a lack of balance in his diet, a reaction to some kind of food, stress, or something else.

On our way to the doctor

Tiny Blog Tuesday: Science Centre

I missed Microblog Monday…again. So here we are with Tiny Blog Tuesday.

The Ontario Science Centre is one of our favourite family outings. Carter talks about going frequently and makes up stories about people visiting it (most recently I was told a story about Spiderman going to the Science Centre in a garbage truck with his god parents). It’s such an easy place to let Dyl go wild and crawl/walk everywhere without causing damage. They have a wonderful interactive children’s areas complete with a baby/toddler space but even in the main exhibits there is very little that I have to steer the kids away from. I purchased Daniela a membership for her birthday last year and we’ve since renewed it for the next 2 years because we love it that much. I like the idea of my kids feeling comfortable in such a large space. I love them learning about things that may seem completely over their head but then Carter explaining friction to me as he plays with his toy cars. I want education to always be so much fun!

What are your favourite places to bring your kids?

   
 

The big 1.

At 3:48am my son officially turned one.  

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So much has happened in the past week.  

-Carter started daycare and did far better than we could have expected.
-Carter picked up germs at daycare and got far more sick than we could have expected.
-We had to cancel Carter’s little bday get together with our adult friends so that we could just focus on the boy and nurse him back to health.  In the end I think this was better for all of us.  We really needed time together after the week we had had and he needed to be able to be extra needy/clingy/tired/fussy.
-Carter, after no interest in standing or walking for months, took his first steps.

That last one is pretty major and I’m still in shock.  We’ve been trying to get him to stand unassisted for months and he just wouldn’t for any longer than a couple seconds.  Yesterday my friend put him into standing position and he stood and my wife called him over to her and so he just walked to her.  Just like that.  I should add that he fell over after a few steps and never did more than about 6 steps at a time all night before tumbling but he is showing interest.  He is excited about it.  It’s such a major milestone.  I love that it happened the day before his birthday because it makes me feel like he is a procrastinator.  If this is true, he will drive me mental but we will have lots in common.

Today, I no longer have a baby.  I have a toddler.  This would be far more bittersweet if I didn’t have a babe on the way.  Now I can focus on the excitement of having a toddler.