CONSTIPATION AND DIARRHEA IN CHILDREN
SYMPTOMS, PREVENTION AND TREATMENT
Since the inception of her free health webinars, DiagnoStar, a digital telehealth solution, has made good her promise of empowering Africans with information that will help them stay above and on top of their health.
On 31st July, DiagnoStar health hosted a webinar on the topic, “Constipation and Diarrhea in children; Symptoms, treatment and prevention,” in collaboration with US based Chief clinician officer and pediatrician, Dr. Jessica McGhee.
The webinar was highly educative on real issues centered around infant constipation and diarrhea and also provided practical solutions on treatment and prevention mechanisms. There were participants from Nigeria and other parts of Africa, particularly mothers and caregivers, even Fathers who were interested in learning about the many therapeutic options available for constipation and diarrhea in children were not left out of this webinar.
If you missed the webinar, this is a short summary of what you missed:
- Chronic constipation is defined as the delayed or infrequent passage of hard stools, and is characterized by more than 3 days lack of stooling, coupled with pain while passing hard stool.
- Some causes of constipation in children include painful stools in past-posturing; slow transit of food materials through the gut; toilet training refusal, fear of toilet, stress; poor appetite; low muscle tone (hypotonia).
- There are some medications that can make constipation worse in children; some of them are imipramine (used to treat bed wetting), anticonvulsant (for seizure control), cough medication (for relief from cough), etc.
- Treatment of chronic constipation includes a clean out to get fecal matter out, then continued medication to keep soft stool and promote regular bowel movement.
- You can also help prevent recurrence of chronic constipation by:
- Modifying the behavior of your child – practicing bicycle legs with infants and encouraging toilet training in toddlers.
- Daily medication regimen- giving miralax and colace to soften stool; and giving senna or Dulcolax, stimulant laxatives to help them pass stool.
- Chronic or persistent diarrhea is a stooling episode that lasts longer than 14 days.
- Potential etiologies for chronic diarrhea include toddlers’ diarrhea, lactose intolerance, infections (C. difficile, and some parasites like Giardia), malabsorption and intestinal surgeries.
- Toddlers’ diarrhea is chronic nonspecific diarrhea of children and affects children of 6 months to 5 years of age. Stool is usually watery and frequent, and may contain undigested food particles (but not blood).
- Causes of toddlers’ diarrhea are unknown but triggers include consumption of sweetened beverages, candies or surgery foods. Other triggers include lactose intolerance and the fast passage of food through the colon with decreased contact with colon.
- Treatment of toddlers’ diarrhea varies with specific causes:
- Treatment of Toddlers’ diarrhea caused by Clostridioides difficile (C.difficile) includes: giving fluids, giving antibiotics in severe infections, and generally practicing good hygiene around children.
- Treatment of toddlers’ diarrhea caused by celiac disease includes the complete removal of gluten from diet ( since celiac disease is triggered by the consumption of gluten).
Generally, always evaluate your child for the presence of “red flag” symptoms of chronic constipation and diarrhea. Some of such symptoms are recurrent fever, failure to thrive, significant weight loss, blood in stool in absence of anal fissures (tears), vomiting bile, severe abdominal distention, severe abdominal pain (localized), etc.
Visit our Youtube Channel to watch the full video .
DiagnoStar Health will be hosting yet another webinar on the topic, “Ear Infections and Hygiene.” This webinar will be hosted in collaboration with Dr. Erika Babatunde. Details will be shared shortly. Follow us on our social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn) to stay updated.
DiagnoStar is an integrated healthcare technology company that provides access to premium healthcare services to individuals and corporate bodies (hospitals, HMOs, government agencies, and businesses, etc) in Africa and beyond.
DiagnoStar Health aims to breach the divide in the healthcare gap currently faced in Africa, by utilizing technology to provide Africans and people living in Africa with access to quality healthcare services and information regarding health and wellness. Some services provided by the brand include telehealth, Electronic Health Records (EMR), medical billing, patient engagement, medical supplies, evacuation support, amongst others.
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