The children’s continence charity ERIC (Education and Resources for Improving Childhood Continence), has launched a national campaign called "Let’s Talk About Poo" to raise awareness of childhood constipation among parents of two to four year olds and health and education professionals working with this age group. Constipation is most common in toddlers and pre-school age children; it is important to tackle it at this early stage to prevent it becoming chronic and having a long-term impact on a child’s health and well-being.
Up to 30 per cent of children suffer with constipation and it becomes chronic in more than one in three cases with some 13,000 hospital admissions for childhood constipation in England each year – about 35 children being admitted to hospital every day.
The effects of unrecognised or inadequately treated constipation in children can include:
The long-term impact for the whole family can include social isolation, disruption to family life and feelings of frustration and despair.
ERIC has a new website giving information about the signs, symptoms and treatment of children’s constipation. The campaign is supported by children’s TV presenter and paediatrician Dr Ranj Singh.
The website features ERIC’s fun and colourful wee and poo characters and an interactive game to make children more comfortable talking about poo and poo problems. ERIC’s resources about understanding and maintaining healthy bowels are available to download, as well as up to date research and useful information for parents and professionals about managing and treating childhood constipation.