Soiling / constipation - school or stay at home. What... - ERIC


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Soiling / constipation - school or stay at home. What would you do?

Sarah2208 profile image

Sorry it's a long post!

Did is 4.8 years has bouts Overflow & constipation. This has been our day.

Up between 12am -1.30 with trips to the loo thing to poo. No joy

Mad dash down to school as she urge to go. (Had to ask to be let into school early). She couldn't do anything!

Husband picked her up from school, teacher had a word saying she'd had 5 accidents at school and implied that she may be should be at home. (I wasn't there so only going by what I've been told). Pants that have been changed have only light soiling (like bottom not wiped properly) so wasn't like the accidents I was expecting. Husband had to take her back to school on way home as she had an urge again and it was nearer than going home. Still no joy.

She's now bee sat on loo for over an hour!

Would/do you send your child to school when/if they are trying to go to the loo so often with some soiling? School are aware she's taking laxido etc. whats your experience?

Thanks x

9 Replies

I've so far only kept my daughter off school when shes had antibiotics (as they affect her bowels) in the past, but not for constipation or soiling, which we have had far more of in the last few weeks and months.


My son had a very unsympathetic teacher last year when he was going through a particularly bad phase and I believe she made the problem a lot worse as his anxiety got worse. I was called to school to take him home one day and another day she told me it was unhygienic to have him in class. I was furious!!!! I arranged an appointment with the head teacher and explained that if he had learning difficulties that they would accommodate them, and this was just another thing like that, just toilet related. The headteacher was fantastic and we worked on a way to move forward to ensure he was able to not only be in class, but also to reduce his anxiety related to it (for example the teacher would ask in front of everyone why he had had an accident which she put a stop to immediately). Personally for me I haven't ever felt he has needed to be at home, but I needed the school buy in which luckily I got. However everyone is different so this might not necessarily work for you.

Lktoday profile image
Lktoday in reply to CN4321

That is terrible and that teacher should be reprimanded, if not struck off. It’s vital to have school support and I feel more should be done for schools and teachers to raise awareness of this problem which, whilst may not be completely commonplace isnt entirely rare either. Our children should be given the opportunity to grow up with confidence and support as any child with a health difficulty should. This issue is a particularly taboo and difficult one to deal with but I’m glad to say my son’s school have also been supportive and helpful, I’d find life a whole lot more difficult if that werent the case.

My son is 11 and has had chronic constipation all through his school life. School initially thought he was unwell (diarrhoea) and wanted to send him home. I explained to welfare and since then, they have been great with him. Discreet and helping him clean up (when he was really small he had to be showered down on one occasion and 2 members of staff were present for safeguarding reasons to help him do that, they also arranged for him to have a helper on school trips just in case, so he didnt have to miss out). Its only recently though that they’ve taken on board the psychological impact this has had on his self esteem, confidence and anxiety levels and friendships. As he’ll be moving to secondary school in September they’re now trying to put things in place (such as 1 to 1 support sessions) to help improve this.

With my son there is a physical and a behavioural element to his soiling and constipation. I have always felt it necessary to maintain a semblance of ‘normality’ to day-to-day life to try and reduce the behavioural aspect. In recent years, I’ve noticed he soils less when he’s really engaged in something- if we go on a day out he really wants to go on, for example, so if he thought getting out of school by soiling was a possibility, his accidents might increase. The psychologist has recently suggested perhaps there are some ‘good’ aspects of soiling for him and he admits that he gets out of things he doesnt like or is anxious about- such as school residentials or swimming.

There are no hard and fast answers and its horses for courses but in my experience, keeping him in school as much as possible and garnering as much support as I can has been great for me and I hope stands him in good stead for the future in terms of having a work ethic and never giving up.

When my son was similar age had had same issues and with wet accidents too. We used the pants pads from Asda(can’t remember what they are called) and just put spare pants, wipes and pads and plastic bags in his bag every day. She may need a disimpaction dose, check this out with GP as they can feel her tummy. We also got school nurse in to support and got a toileting plan put in place (doing the same now he is 9 btw!). It’s a health need and school have to make reasonable adjustments. They may listen to school nurse or continence nurse and it may help your daughter to know that what is happening to her is natural and not her fault in any way (nurse can talk to her) We are doing the, “age they are times minutes” sitting on the loo 20 mins after meals now (I’ve bought a liquid timer and he has toys in the bathroom). Wish someone had told me about that when he was young. Good luck

Thank you for sharing your experiences. It's good to hear that schools have been supportive. CN4321, it must have been hard for you both when the teacher wasn't supportive, I agree that school will have to "buy in".

She ended up being off school on Thursday/Friday as she was unwell.

I send her to school with a change of clothes but will put more pants from next week. I'm going to put some wet toilet wipes in too as it might help her with cleaning herself up and stop staining, which I think is what the problem was rather than soiling.

We've been back to the doctor and she's increased the Laxido dose and added lactose. If that doesn't work we've to go back.


We've had a meeting with the class teacher and she was understanding.

We've decided to use liners whilst she's at school so changing etc is quicker. We're going to keep in contact with teacher so we both know what's happening at school and home.

I think send them in. We once had a school tell us it was a tummy bug and she had to have 48 hours off! ( we’ve since moved schools!)

Sounds like she may be constipated and the messing is the overflow? Have you had a go at the sweetcorn test ? To eat it and see when it comes out? Altho my 14 yr old has had this for 10yrs now.1 week he is at school spending huge amounts of time on the toilet.Last week he had full week off school.This week he has been ok and making quite few lessons

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