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Avatar universal

My 8 year old still poops in his pants

I have an 8 year old that still poops his in his underwear.  He had several hard bowel movements when he was much younger which probably lead to him holding his bowels in fear of a painful bowel movement.  He has been put on miralax and has been taking it on and off for a couple of years.  I have taken away his privledges, made him sit on the toilet twice a day for 15 minutes even spanking (which I felt really really bad for spanking him)  He has dropped little poop balls in public (school, YMCA, other peoples houses) unintentionally and intentionally.  Often he notices the pooped that he dropped and hides it under the couch, in the faucet or whereever.  I have told him that it is okay to pick it up and put it in the toilet and he would not be punished but, he still hides it.  I am so afraid that he will get soooo embarrassed when some person or KID finds out.  What can I possibly do to help him overcome this severe problem.
11 Responses
Avatar universal
I am sorry that you are experiencing those issues.  My nine-year old son has always had problems with constipation himself.  He is pretty much terrified of eating cheese, because it seems like everytime he does he has to have me to go in the bathroom, hold his hand and rub his belly for him.  I explained to him that he had to be careful about how much cheese he eats and notice when his belly hurt and it happened remember what he ate not too long before that made him that way.  This way he could avoid what foods he was eating so it won't happen again.  When he was a baby, I had to give him laxatives too.  Now since we have our "plan" he hasn't had too much problem and does pretty good.  [Oh, he don't like orange juice either, but loves cranberry-grape!]

Your eight your old seems like he is aware of his problem, but doesn't know what to do to help himself.  May I ask why you put him back on Miralax?  When you took him off did you supplement it with something that would be excreted shortly afterwards, such as prunes?  Did you try deleting constipation related foods such as cheese and orange juice?

Hope this helps,
From Rachael
Avatar universal
My 8 almost 9 year old is doing this too. He's been doing this for 4 years straight and it's got me so frustrated. I've tried punishment, rewards, spanking, doctors, ect. I even had him sit on the toilet for 15 mins every hour and caught him standing in the bathroom instead of sitting. We've asked him why and he said he's lazy. I've had those embarrassing calls from school, his teacher saying that he stinks and we've tried to work together to get him to stop. We've used Santa and that isn't working anymore. I would love to know if you have found some sort of advice that helped.
189897 tn?1441126518
       We actually have had lots of posts on this subject.   I assume that when you said doctors - you had him checked to see that there was not a medical problem causing this?  How extensive was the exam and how long ago was it done?
     What type of dietary changes have you tried?
     When he does poop - what does it look like?   hard, liquid like, normal?  Is it a large poop.  or basically a series of small ones over time?
     And I would assume that his teacher will let him go to the bathroom any time he wants and not just at break time or recess time when lots of kids are in there?
189897 tn?1441126518
   This post has lots of good info.  Scroll all the way down to the end to the posts for Sept 11 and Sept 14 - http://www.medhelp.org/forums/Child-Behavior/show/64?page=7
509215 tn?1363535823
has anyone ever heard of ENCOPRESIS? This is something I just found out due to my nephew being hospitalised with this condition. It consists of the intestines being back up so bad and packed to the point of the kids honestly not being able to porperly use the toilet because they can't get rid of the pack poop. My nephew was hospitalised for five days and was given a high fibre diet along with sone laxative medication he had to take 2 times a day along with getting enemas and eating lots of fruits and veggies and lots to drink. The way they were with him was he was only allowed to eat for a half hour, then wait 10 mins then go sit on the toilet for ten minutes. A whole week of this along with x-rays and other thing to check him and he finally got out yesturday but this is a condition that he'll have to deal with his whole life. They also used a sticker program with him for pooping and peeing when he did then he would get rewarded somehow. According to his dr's, bananas, cheese and milk product dont bind you up unless you eat too much of it. Consuming it in moderation if fine. So like only 1 banana a day, 1-2 slices a day of cheese, and a cup or two of milk or milk products aday if fine. Anything more than this can bind them up again. Eating fruits like apples, pears, peaches, berries, grapes, etc are all recommended. Veggies like corn, peas, carrots, any type of beans, and whatever else you can think of is fine as well. Meat and potatoes, rice, pasta is all fine as long as you watch what you put on them is absolutely fine. Drinking lots of water, real juice not something like kool-aid is fine, reduce the amount of sugar and salt intake. I hope this information helps you all out there dealing with this problem with your children. There are tests that the dr's can do for ENCOPRESIS so if you think this maybe your childs case for this problem please get them in asap to their family dr. or a pediatrician. Good luck!
189897 tn?1441126518
   Thanks for the repost supermomma.  I just realized the link I gave which was to your post and another good one was incorrect.  Her is the link to the whole thing.   http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Child-Behavior/why-does-my-10-year-old-son-still-poop-in-pants/show/521820#post_8319131
Avatar universal
This was an exact description with my son. Thank you. I am going to make an appt with my dr asap. Thank you for you insight.
Avatar universal
My 8  year old step daughter is having this issue. She never poops in the toilet, it's always in her pants. We have her sitting on the toilet sometimes for more than 15 minutes an hour and nothing. There have been times where we have caught her standing up and we ask her why and her response is that she was playing. We have tried everything with no luck. We've talked to her, encouraged her, grounded her, spanked her, taken away her toys, thrown away some of her toys, promise to throw a huge party and take her to Disney World (which she gets really excited about), brought up Santa might not come to see her this Christmas, she's not allowed to play until she can go like a big girl, taken her to the park to see other kids play while she sits in the vehicle, expressed our concerns for her health, expressed our concerns regarding kids finding out at school and the possibiities of losing her friends and being made fun of and such. Her excuse is that she doesn't feel it. Which at first I thought maybe she doesn't but then I got to thinking that if she can't feel it then there would be times where she would go in the toilet but she never does. Another thing I don't get is that she says she doesn't feel it in her pants when she does go but she feels the gel that the doctor uses for examining the rectum.

My fiance, her dad, says that this has been going on for 4 years now. She has seen a doctor and he thinks it's pyschological. She's seen a therapist and pyschologist and they can't get anything out of her.

About a month ago we took her off of pull ups and since then she has been with holding her stool for up to 5 days a week. We give her Miralax and Exlax to help her go and sometimes it takes up to 2 days for her to pass any stool. She has an appointment in a few days to get an Anorectal Manometry done but the doctor is most certain that the test results will come out normal.

Any ideas or thoughst on what else we should try?
Avatar universal
My 8year old son was diagnosed with ensopresis about 2 years ago and has every single issue that everyone here is describing. He had went to his pediatrician, put on miralax and suppositories, done x-rays, checked blood work, all of this on and off for the last 2 years. His problems come and go and the severity comes and goes. Example, in this past week, he has thrown away 3 pair of his underwear as soon as he got home from school BC he soiles them and refuses to wear the goodnight underwear I provide for him. In my state, KY, he is still required to sit in a booster seat in the car, when he gets out of the car after sitting on said booster seat for a few trips into town or one long day trip, I have to take the seat out and aash the cover and spray down the seat BC it smells so badly. I have gone to the extent of talking with a therapist to see if there is some psychological reason underlying why he isn't heading to the bathroom or why he could be holding it to the last minute, that they have found a few things specific to him, but nothing positive quite yet to diagnose. All I'm saying, there should be a support group for both parents and the kids who have to go through this, BC I know my son gets picked on for the smells that he may not be able to help and the "gerbil droppings" that he has to pick up.
189897 tn?1441126518
     Thank you for your post.  It shows just how difficult encopresis  is to deal with.  Even when it is a known condition.   You might want to check out the link below.  It is a classic, but  the first part is aimed at your son's age group and the second part is for adults.   It is still probably the best explanation I have come across.
Avatar universal
I have the same problem with my 8 year old son.  He has pooped his pants at school and I have had embarrassing phone calls over poop balls falling on gym and classroom floor. He will take his underwear off and hide them or throw them away then poop in his jeans after that. The school called child protective services on me because he was pooping his pants after throwing his underwear away at school and the nurse thought I wasn’t sending him to school in underwear. Of course cps said it was one of the dumbest calls they have received and asked if I was discipline him for it and said that as long as I was trying to handle the issue there was nothing they could do. But how embarrassing. The dr suggested miralax which doesn’t work because he’s not constipated.  What is odd is all four of my kids were premature. The oldest two were a month early and the youngest two were two months early. My youngest daughter had The same issue but was constipated but didn’t stop until she was 12 and started having boyfriends. My son claims he doesn’t want to stop playing long enough to go. But we explained to him. It takes longer to clean up and usually results in taking a shower also because it’s so bad. We can’t keep underwear long because he will poop  small amount but enough to throw them away but because he doesn’t get it all out sometimes he poops in underwear up to four times a day. We have now resulted to pull ups. We hoped that would make him go but instead he seems to poop in diapers even more. We explained the kids at school can smell him but so far they have never t picked on him about it. I thought maybe my youngest two had issues with their bowels for being premature but the dr said no. Potty charts work sometimes if he goes for a week straight without messing himself he gets a prize but lately that doesn’t work either. His father and I r now making him go in regular bathroom breaks and he can’t get up until he tries to poop in potty. It seems to work the best but as soon as we let up even a little he stops. I think it’s more habit than anything and seems to work best when we try to break the habit and start a new habit of making him go potty everyday around the same time. We tried grounding him and punishing him in different ways and nothing works. We have tried talking to him several times with no results. He always says that he same thing that he doesn’t know why he does it or that he just does t want to stop long enough to go because it takes to long. Which I’m sure most parents with this problem hear the same thing. He does feel the urge to go and has no medical issue. Being consistant with potty times has worked the best so far. We usually make him go after dinner and before bath. Hope this helps. I’m open to any advice someone can give me also
I have the same problem he is eight was just 2 weeks before the due date so not really  premature he is not constipated at all but he just wont stop whatever his is doing to used the bathroom he will pee his bed too if I don't make sure he uses the bathroom before bed  . he is a very smart kids this is obviously something phycological has to be . HELP I don't want to hurt him or punish him as I can see it wont even work
Hummm, pretty common for a child with adhd.  Have his teachers ever seemed concerned about him not paying attention in class?    Besides,  that you need to make him sit on the toilet whether he feels the need or not...and then he can go back to his games.
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