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Can Constipation Cause Fever?

Understanding Symptoms Of Constipation

Dr. Nelli Gluzman Profile Photo

Written by Dr. Nelli Gluzman on May 19, 2021

Let’s face it: constipation is a highly common problem that we, and our children, eventually face. So, let’s talk about it.

Constipation can be caused by a variety of things, like a lack of physical activity, a diet that does not contain sufficient fiber, or even dehydration. Most commonly, though, it is linked back to the foods we eat each day, and the foods we need more of.

When your child becomes constipated, we know bathroom-time can be a bit of a struggle. In children, constipation can happen pretty easily because kids tend to be more sensitive to things like a change in their diet.

Knowing the most common symptoms of constipation in kids can help you recognize, and resolve, any problems more quickly.

Most Common Symptoms of Constipation

Simply put, you can recognize constipation in your child based on whether or not they seem to be going to the bathroom frequently or not often enough at all.

Other symptoms of constipation include:

  • Less than three bowel movements per week
  • Stomach pain
  • Bowel movements that are difficult to pass because they are hard or dry
  • Pain while having a bowel movement

If your child expresses any of these symptoms to you, you can pretty confidently assume that constipation is the culprit.

That said, there are some more serious symptoms that are an indication of something more serious, and one of these symptoms is a fever, so let’s take a look at the signs that should point you in the direction of the doctor’s office.

When To Visit the Pediatrician

Most often, your child’s constipation will be nothing to worry about, and will be easily resolvable with some slight diet changes and increased water intake.

Certain symptoms do, however, mean that you should take your kid to the doctor’s office to make sure nothing serious is going on.

Symptoms that should be taken more seriously include:

  • Constipation that lasts longer than two weeks
  • Fever
  • Refusal to eat
  • Weight loss
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Blood in the stool or black stool

These are signs that something bigger may be happening, or that your child’s constipation has become severe and requires medical attention.

If your child does come down with a fever alongside their constipation, it is important to note that there is likely some kind of infection causing all of their symptoms, which is why a doctor should be consulted. If there is an infection causing your child’s constipation and fever, a doctor can prescribe any necessary medications that will take care of the problem.

Fecal Impaction

Sometimes, unresolved constipation can lead to further complications that should be treated by a doctor.

One of these complications is fecal impaction, and this takes place when constipation is prolonged such that new stool continues to form and harden, making it impossible for other stool to pass through the blockage.

Symptoms of fecal impaction include:

  • Only passing small, pea-sized stool
  • Inability to pass stool at all
  • Uncontrolled, water diarrhea that occurs if the stool is not completely blocked
  • Refusal to eat
  • Child’s posture or behavior showing discomfort
  • Painful bowel movements
  • Bloating
  • Vomiting

Fecal impaction is most often caused by constipation, but may also be caused by your child holding in their stool purposefully out of the fear of experiencing pain during a bowel movement.

How To Treat Constipation and Fecal Impaction

The good news is that both constipation and fecal impaction are highly treatable at home with the help of medicine.

Adding more fiber into your child’s diet will promote a healthy digestive system and help keep bowels moving, and encouraging them to up their water intake will also help keep everything moving along.

The use of stool softeners and laxatives can definitely come in handy if your child’s symptoms are unmanageable or too uncomfortable to be resolved by a change in diet.

When it comes to choosing these medicines, though, you might find it difficult to find one that does not come along with other artificial inactive ingredients.

Genexa is the first clean medicine brand, and they are working to revolutionize the world of medicine by offering products that contain the active ingredients you need, without the inactive, artificial ingredients you don’t need (and probably don’t want to give to your children). Genexa was founded by two dads who wanted clean medicine options for their families, and they are committed to bringing you medicine you can trust.

Genexa’s Kids’ Senna Laxative can bring relief in 6-12 hours, making it perfect to give to your kids at bedtime so that they can feel some much needed relief come the morning.

If fecal impaction becomes too severe to be treated with medication, a doctor will be able to remove the blockage. After the blockage is cleared, they will likely give you a stool softener and tell you to follow a high fiber diet.

The not-so-great news is that if you do not account for your child’s constipation in the long term, i.e. if you still do not incorporate more fiber into their diet, impaction will likely come back each time your child is constipated. So, it is super important to make sure your kids are getting enough fiber every day, especially if they have already had some backed-up tummy troubles.

A good, general rule of thumb is that if constipation lasts more than two weeks each time it comes around, or if your child seems to become constipated on a regular basis, it is time to take a trip to your pediatrician. These can be indications of a more serious digestive issue, or this might signal the need for some critical diet changes or food intolerances.

Regardless, consulting your pediatrician will get you the answers you and your child need, and they will get everyone on the path to recovery.

At the End of the Day…

When it comes down to it, chances are that your child’s tummy troubles will be easily resolved.

In most cases, all it takes is a little more fiber and water, and sometimes some medicine. Moving forward, maintaining a high fiber diet for your children will help prevent the problem from happening again.

Medicines like those offered by Genexa can be a great help, as stool softeners or laxatives can get things moving along.

In cases that are more severe or do not seem to respond to typical methods of treatment, it is necessary to consult your pediatrician in order to make sure that nothing more serious is going on behind the scenes. Symptoms like a fever, bloating, painful abdominal swelling, and constipation lasting more than two weeks are all signs that medical attention is needed.

Constipation can sometimes lead to other complications, like fecal impaction, so it is important to seek medical help if symptoms do not start to resolve within a week or so. More specifically, complications are more likely to happen if your child begins avoiding bowel movements because they are afraid of being in pain, as this behavior can result in a blockage.

Overall, all of these issues are highly treatable by a medical professional or the right clean medicine, and taking preventative measures for better digestive health can keep them from happening again in the future.


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