One thing nobody ever warns you about when it comes to parenting is how concerned you’ll be about your child’s bowel habits. Despite being an unpleasant task, you tend to worry about your child’s bowel habits from birth to almost teen years. It is the balance of are they pooping too much or not at all. So when your toddler is constipated, you probably wish you had a magical digestive wand you could wave to make it all better.

Constipation in kids is actually slightly differently than when an adult is constipated. Typically constipation in adults is having three or fewer bowel movements per week, whereas constipation in children is defined as fewer than two per week. This means that your child’s frequency of “going” might not be as unusual.

If your child is going through actual constipation then you must be aware that this is extremely common in toddlers. In fact, about 5 percent of children’s doctor visits are related to being all stopped up. With the right methods and treatment, you can help your child get things flowing smoothly again.

Let’s take a look at the ins and outs of toddler constipation.

How to Tell if your Toddler is Constipated:

While the broad definition of constipation in kids is fewer than two successful poops per week, children can still experience discomfort (and benefit from some gentle interventions) before things get to this point.

If you’re parenting a toddler, then you know their verbal skills are not fully developed to the point where they can speak up and say, “I’m constipated!” Luckily for parents and doctors there are signs and symptoms you can spot.

Here are some indicators of constipation in toddlers:

  • stools that are hard, dry, or pebble-like
  • straining or pain (or both) when trying to pass large pieces of stool
  • abdominal pain
  • bloating
  • nausea
  • fear or avoidance of using the toilet
  • blood on the stool
  • unusual poop “accidents” or underwear stains in a child who’s already potty trained

In need of more relief options? Contact Us:

If you have been searching Google for a gastroenterologist near me, gastroenterologist for children near me or children’s gastroenterologist near me, look no further then Gainesville Pediatric GI. Schedule a consultation online at