Q: From the day she was born, my one-year-old has struggled with constipation. Her doctor has put her on medications and we’ve been careful with her diet, offering fruits, veggies, whole grains and plenty of water, but her BMs are still hard and painful.
A: The most important part of your note is that your daughter’s condition has been present since day one. Constipation is very unusual in newborns, who generally have loose stools with a scrambled-egg consistency. You’ve done the right thing in paying attention to the fibre and water in your daughter’s diet, but because these measures haven’t helped, I think it’s time to investigate whether her bowel is structured normally and that her bowel activity is normal. These studies should be done with the guidance of a paediatric gasteroenterologist. See your daughter’s primary-care doctor to get the ball rolling