Constipation is described as bowel movements that are hard and dry, difficult or painful to pass, and less frequent than normal.
Although constipation in young children is often harmless the following are a few guidelines as to when to contact the child's physician. If the child is not able to participate in their day to day normal activities
Foods that Relieve Constipation in Young Children
Treatment depends on the child's age and the severity of the problem. However, often increasing fiber foods, which are found in plant foods such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, drinking more liquids, and getting more exercise will solve the child's problem.
Fiber that is soluble takes on a soft, gel like texture in the intestines and dissolves easily in water and, as such, it helps soften stools.
On the other hand, insoluble fiber passes through the intestine virtually unchanged and adds bulk to stools. Nonetheless, both types of fiber help prevent hard, dry stools.
However, to maximize your child's health benefits of fiber intake, they should eat a wide variety of high-fiber foods.
Foods that Relieve Constipation
Increase the child's daily intake of rich high-fiber foods such as fresh fruits, raw green leafy vegetables, whole-grain oatmeal, and brown rice.
Also include foods such as asparagus, beans, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, garlic, kale, okra, peas, sweet potatoes, and whole grains.
Foods that contain high amounts of soluble fiber include adzuki beans, barley, dried beans, oats, apples, apricots, bananas, blackberries, cranberries, figs, grapes, peaches, and prunes.
Foods that contain high amounts of insoluble fiber include cereals, seeds, wheat bran, whole grains, and the skins of many vegetables as well as fruits.
Figs or prunes are considered to be the best natural laxatives and can very helpful for constipation in young children.
Fluids, such as water and fruit juice helps to soften stools so it's important that your child is drinking plenty of these types of liquids daily.
Diets high in fat, including fried, refined, and processed foods should be avoided.
Constipation in Young Children
Herbs that can Help!
Aside from incorporating high fiber foods and lots of liquids, there are supplements that can help with this complaint.
However, be sure to consult with the child's physician before administering any dietary supplements.
In addition, check the manufactures age requirements and recommended dosage.
Herbs noted to help get things rolling again are:
Aloe vera juice has a soothing as well as healing and cleansing effect on the digestive system and, as such, it aids in forming soft stools.
Flaxseed oil helps to soften stools and may get things moving again.
Dandelion is also used as a constipation aid due to its powerful laxative properties.
Psyllium seed is also helpful for constipation and may be your salvation.
Other helpful herbs include ginger, cascara sagrada, rhubarb root, senna leaves, and yerba mate.
It's important to alleviate constipation because sometimes this condition can lead to hemorrhoids, rectal prolapse, fecal impaction, and others.
It can also give rise to many different aliments such as headaches, fatigue, gas, hernia, obesity, insomnia, body odor, bad breath, appendicitis, indigestion, and others.
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