If your toddler has recently stopped pooing as frequently as he or she once did, you may suspect constipation. Ideally, children should have one bowel movement each day, though some will have more or less. Symptoms of constipation include bowel movements less than three times each week, leakage stains in underwear between bowel movements, blood appearing outside the stool, and stool that is large, dry, and painful when passed. When these problems last for more than two weeks, it may indicate chronic constipation (which you should talk to your child’s pediatrician about). It’s otherwise normal for your child to feel occasionally “backed up.” Luckily, relief for this discomfort may be as simple as a change in your child’s diet.
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