Recent Blog Articles
Cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia by telemedicine: Is it as good as in-person treatment?
Prediabetes diagnosis as an older adult: What does it really mean?
Is blood sugar monitoring without diabetes worthwhile?
Large review study finds low risk of erectile dysfunction after prostate biopsy
Does exercise help protect against severe COVID-19?
A new Alzheimer’s drug has been approved. But should you take it?
Need physical therapy? 3 key questions your PT will ask
COVID-19 vaccines: Safe and effective for American Indian and Alaskan Native communities
Should we track all breakthrough cases of COVID-19?
Period equity: What is it, why does it matter?
Constipation in Children and Teens
Constipation in Children
Lots of children suffer from constipation -- bowel movements that are hard or painful. Your child may become constipated because of toilet-training troubles or anxiety related to using the toilet. Or, he may not be getting enough fiber or liquids in his diet or may not be getting enough exercise.
This health decision guide will help you understand what causes constipation, how you can ease your child's discomfort, and when it is necessary to contact your pediatrician. Proceed through the questions -- unless you are instructed to seek medical help.
For questions about constipation in infants, please visit our Constipation in Infants Guide.
Bowel habits vary from child to child. Some children have a bowel movement every day, others go every few days. Two to three days between bowel movements generally are not cause for concern, as long as your child is not having pain or vomiting.
Do any of these statements describe your child?
He has not had a bowel movement for more than three days.
He has hard, painful stools.
He does not have stools very often and when he does, they are very large, sometimes clogging the toilet.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.