If your kid has an irregular bowel movement, then he is certainly suffering from constipation. But there is nothing to worry about as constipation is a common problem that many teenagers face. Read the post below that will guide you as to how to deal with constipation in teens.
What Is Constipation?
Being constipated means irregular bowel movements that may occur after every three days or more. Due to this reason, the regular cycle gets disturbed for one reason or the other.
What Causes Constipation In Teens?
There are several reasons behind the condition. Here are some common causes that may be the reason behind teenage constipation.
- Constipation is caused due to an unhealthy diet that may include less fibre content and more junk food.
- Diseases like diabetes and hypothyroidism are also the causes of constipated stomach.
- If your child is on some medication like antidepressants or antihistamines, then as a side-effect of these medicines bowel movement can become irregular.
[ Read: Side Effects Of Junk Food On Teens ]
What Are The Symptoms Of Constipation In Teenagers?
According to Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, “Any stool held back in the colon dries out as the body naturally withdraws water from the stool. The longer the stool is held in the colon, the larger and harder it becomes making bowel movements even more painful and difficult to pass.”
- Hard stools that may cause pain on passing.
- Infrequent bowel movements.
- No bowel movement at all for around two to three days in a row.
- In severe cases, swelling might occur in the abdomen.
- A sensation of stomach being full even after bowel movement.
[ Read: Eating Disorders In Teenagers ]
What Are The Remedies For Constipation?
So all you worried parents out there, do not freak out if your teenager is hit by the problem of constipation for quite sometime. Instead, make your child follow these easy-to-do steps at home and see the difference yourself.
Health writer Konstantin Monastyrsky says on his website Gutsense: “It is easier to reverse constipation because children enjoy robust digestion, supple intestines, undamaged bowels, good muscle tone, highly sensitive nerve endings, a steady schedule, and aren‘t yet as inhibited by social mores as are adults.”
1. By Changing Diet:
The most effective way to say bye to constipation is changing the diet.Include as much fibre in your teen’s diet as you can. Also, make sure that your teen consumes enough of fresh fruits and vegetables.
2. Make A Diet Plan:
Ensure that your teen does not skip meals as irregular eating pattern adds to the problem of constipation. Also, do not overeat. Your teen should have balanced diet at regular intervals. Try to make a habit of having all four meals viz. Breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner on time.
[ Read: Balanced Diet For Teens ]
3. Regular Exercise:
Physical activity helps strengthening pelvic floor as well as abdominal muscles, thereby regulating bowel movement. So, ask your teenager to hit the gym or go for a brisk walk early morning in a verdant garden or park for about half an hour or so. People who like going the conventional way can also do yoga. Some of the yoga asanas or postures are effective in treating constipation.
[ Read: Benefits Of Regular Exercises For Teens ]
4. Drink Enough Fluids:
One of the best ways to remove irregular bowel movements is by increasing intake of water and other fluids. Try to drink 8-10 glasses of water every-day. You can ask your teen to drink some fresh juices like orange, pomegranate, etc in the morning. Avoid alcoholic beverages and caffeine containing drinks as they cause dehydration in the body.
5. Schedule A Fixed Time:
In order to get rid of constipation, you need to fix a time for going to the bathroom to relieve yourself. This will gradually alleviate the problem of irregular bowel movement.
You can also ask your teen to use laxatives, or if the problem is severe he can also use enemas.
Constipation is not a serious disease, however if unchecked for a long time, can become an aggravated illness of the digestive system and might cause some secondary problems related to digestion. So all the youngsters do follow the above-mentioned suggestions and if you have some other remedy that worked for you, then do share by dropping a comment below.