Movicol/soiling success!

Thought I'd write a positive success story post about how it can improve and what I've done to help my daughters soiling/constipation. She's 4.5 years old and has been on movicol roughly since 2. Her brother is 3 and has never had any issues, ever. She started withholding after she was potty trained and in turn this lead to constipation and what I think was a stretched bowel. Cue numerous episodes over the years of having some weeks completely clean and then most other weeks dirty pants every 1-2 hours. I tried changing her diet (she's always been very good with fruit and veg) changing her drinks, her poo habits, the way I go about things, disimpacting, everything. She's been on 1 movicol sachet a day maintenance for a year now and it stuck at that. Recently I was at my wits end and decided to try two new (and slightly obvious) tactics. 1) cut out dairy from her diet whilst keeping the calories, and 2) triple her fluid intake. Now while she did drink, she's more of a sipper and would happily go all day only drinking 100-200mls. I believe this was a major contributing factor. Last week I sat her down and said she will have a cup (150/180mls) of anything she wants at breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and tea times. And she did! She was sensible and chose things like diluted squash, fruit juice, soya milkshakes, smoothie, but she did drink and my god it's made a hell of a difference. She's averaging 800-1100mls per day now. I think the lack of proper dairy has helped too, she's having soya most things and doesn't seem to notice or care. She has now been days and days going for a poo (or two!) properly per day, of her own accord, no soiling, peeing more and her appetite and temperament has improved. So please try these things before seeking any more medical help!! I also tried to be very positive and laid back about it all whilst keeping a close eye on everything without seeming to. Hope this helps someone!

14 Replies

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  • Thanks for sharing this! It is always good to read positive stories. I really agree that fluid makes a difference. My daughter is 6, takes movicol daily and small dose of senokot which she is being weaned off slowly. She will happily not drink much all day and I really have to try hard to get fluid in her. I give her melon, water melon as very high water content and sugar free jelly and ice lollies. I also give her decaffeinated tea as she thinks that is very grown up to drink. She will happily have these things and as you say it really helps. Keep up the excellent work, it really is 'work' with all this...x

  • Yes it is! And can be so stressful. In on my own, and coping with countless soiling day after day was grinding me down. My daughter likes herbal and decaf tea too, which is helpful 😊

    Apparently between 4 and 7 years they need roughly 1000-1200 mls per day for their bodies to work to their best advantage. xx

  • It's really nice to share stories with parents who just get it. I really empathise and our family have been on this journey now for 3 years. Thankfully we were referred to a great paediatric consultant last Summer which has been very helpful. Please stay in touch as I really understand the need for support especially if it's just you dealing with it day in day out. It sounds like you are doing really well and have a really good attitude towards it, that in itself is not easy when you just want to scream as you scrub another pair of knickers! I keep a 'poo' diary everyday so I can look back and see progress, times of relapse etc and also record doses of movicol and senokot. This is helpful as I find if I give her too much movicol that causes soiling issues in itself. Wishing you all the best xx

  • Dear Luella, would it be possible to share with me your excellent consultant? I am thinking of changing the one that my daughter sees at present. At present she is seeing Mr Murphy at the Portland. Many thanks.

  • We were referred to an NHS hospital and saw Dr Ayaz. We saw him at St Helier hospital in Surrey. Very patient and understanding and I felt calmer and more positive after seeing him.

  • Haha I have kept a poo diary too! Has been useful in the past. And I've been keeping a food and drink diary for her for the past 2 weeks to get to grips with what she actually eats and drinks. It is lovely (obv not that you're going through it!) to hear that others understand or are in the same situation.

    After doing more research I'm surprised more people havent realised that dehydration can be a cause for all sorts of problems! Not just constipation. How is your daughter at the moment with it all? x

  • This sounds so like our daughter who is nearly eight and on one movicol sachet a day. This all started when she was three and a half. I have tried reducing the dose to a half of a sachet but that isn't enough and yet a whole one seems too much . She does good amounts of poo on the toilet but still has accidents especially at school. I feel so sorry for her because even when she does a good poo on the toilet and waits to see if there's more within half an hour she can have an accident in her knickers!! Ps she has always drunk loads and doesn't have much dairy but I could try cutting that out altogether.

  • Wow poor her Sally. Have you tried cutting the movicol altogether and seeing if she doesn't need it any more? And just go to the toilet at regular times of day, lots of fluid etc? X

  • Thankyou might give it a whirl if I'm brave enough!! Just frightened of her getting constipated again . It is so lovely to speak to people who understand x

  • Hi again. My daughter is on the whole much better. Her story, similar to most probably. Realised when potty training something wasn't right, lots of small poos in pants all through day and rarely a proper poo. Went to GP at 3 1/2 and he was great and sent her for an X-ray which confirmed constipation (but not really bad) she was cleared out and then put on 1 sachet movicol per day. Reception Year at school was ok as she only had few accidents at school but quite a lot at home but pooed regularly too on toilet. She had good weeks and not so good. Year one she was generally better. We tried a 3 month dairy elimination which made little difference so stopped that, however I do limit her dairy still. Towards end of year one she started having more frequent accidents and a few at school. That's when I desperately went back to GP and got referral. Saw consultant in June and he examined her and confirmed there was no other problems causing the soiling and said to give her 2 movicol a day and 5ml of senokot. He said to lower the movicol if needed, which we did as had multiple messy explosive accidents. We found the perfect dose of 3/4 sachet movicol (1 made up with water and remove 3 teaspoons!) along with the senokot and we had 2 beautiful months of no soiling. Then Year 2 started and a few soiling episodes started again.

    She has to sit on the toilet every evening and try for a poo although she generally goes straight after school. She goes every 2 days usually, occasionally daily. If she soils now it is a tiny squashy bit which stays around her bottom. I think it's movicol that causes this. Because I've now lowered senokot to 2.5ml as advised by consultant (senokot can't be used for too long) I am now trying to find ideal movicol dose to work. I try to change doses when off school. I have 12 year old who has no poo issues. I gave up work two years ago as there was no way I could have put my daughter in after school club as any times she was there she would soil as after school her bowels are most active! I couldn't cope with the stress.

    With the movicol a teaspoon can make a difference, literally try reducing by teaspoon to get dose right, it helped me.

    Sending virtual support. Louise x

  • Thankyou will definitely try three quarters of a sachet of movicol. Miraculously my daughter has only had five accidents in fifteen days at school and only one this week. So chuffed for her. It may not last but it's been great. X

  • It's amazing how happy it makes you isn't it! Enjoy the moment x

  • Thank you we are!! X

  • Movicol is a tricky bugger isn't it! Also can't stress enough how important is it to triple the amount of fluids they're having. Dramatically helped my daughter, within a day id say. She's still on 1 sachet of movicol maintenance but if she's clean for a few weeks I might half it. Xx

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