4

We have a 2.5-year-old whom we started potty training quite early (at roughly 1.5 years of age). We used the same tactic with his older brother, who was successfully potty trained before his 2nd birthday. Unfortunately, it seems that with the 2.5-year-old, everything is completely the opposite.

He is now in a phase where he doesn't poop for more than a week. On day 6-7 he wants to go to his potty, and immediately after sitting down, he says "I'm done" and wants to change his diaper. Sometimes he does this several times in half an hour. It seems he feels when he needs to "go", but doesn't make that one extra step.

We can give him something to play with, like a tablet, while he is on the potty, but then focuses on the tablet instead of his bowels and this doesn't help.

Do you have any advice?

2
  • Where is he in terms of eating? Bottle/breast still? – Joe May 10 at 20:37
  • He eats regular food, although he's quite picky. It's difficult to make him eat fruits and veggies. – Super Dario May 11 at 4:22
2

He is now in a phase where he doesn't poop for more than a week.

What was his pattern before? The purpose of the large bowel is to remove water from food waste. The longer it sits inside, the drier and harder it gets. Having a BM weekly may be painful. That may keep him from straining and doing it. Avoiding BMs=> drier harder, painful => avoiding BMs.

Is he having pain? Is he having liquid or hard BMs? IF liquid, this is fecal impaction and needs specific management. If he has a doc, mention it. He may need a rectal exam to tell for sure what's going on.

Bottom line (no pun intended!) he will probably be more comfortable with more frequent, softer BMs. The trick with this is to not delay. When he gets the urge to have a BM, have him do it sooner rather than later. But bottom line--If he's not having pain or difficulty with BMs, don't worry about it!

If there's some fruit he likes push that (what 2-3 yo ISN'T a picky eater?) And btw, many kids in that age range suddenly eat much less. Half a sandwich and a half a glass of milk is all they eat all day, and that's normal. Fluoride vitamin is still a good idea. More fruit and vegetables, other fiber may help.

If he's not having pain or difficulty with BMs, don't worry about it.

(For the kid WITH pain and or difficulty, or liquid stool around a big blob in the rectum..) Often, starting with oil retention or a Fleet's enema will 'reset' the rectum and let him go back to more frequent BMs.

There are rare conditions that can cause constipation but the most common is avoiding BMs=> drier harder, painful => avoiding BMs.

Plus too little fruit, vegetables and other fiber in diet. But bottom line--If he's not having pain or difficulty with BMs, don't worry about it!

2
  • 4
    Starting to treat constipation/hard stool with enemas is rather drastic, as getting enemas at that age is probably as traumatic as the hard poop is. Increase fluid and fiber, yes, absolutely. Next step, maybe a stool softener or osmotic laxative. Glycerine suppositories are still better than an enema. Last step: enema. – anongoodnurse May 11 at 3:23
  • Thanks for the comments! He used to have more regular bowel movements, but it has gotten worse in the last few months. His stool is solid, healthy, and he doesn't seem to be in pain. Yes, we'll try to make him eat more fiber, but he's picky about food. – Super Dario May 11 at 4:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.