There comes a time in most parent’s life when you are faced with your child complaining of stomach-ache and asking to stay home from school. I know, it happened to me frequently with my youngest daughter.
It can be so hard to judge, especially with younger children, whether the issue is serious or simply an appeal for a day off. My daughter has admitted that some of those earlier episodes were a case of her just wanting to stay home rather than face a test, but others were genuine. When her stomach aches started to interfere with her high-level sport practice, which she loved, I knew for sure that things weren’t right, and I consulted our GP who referred her to a gastroenterologist. In her case, all was well, but if you have any doubt about your child’s symptoms, consult your own medical practitioner.
Whilst children’s stomach aches can be triggered by many things, for some it comes from Paediatric Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and this article will give an overview on:
Understanding paediatric IBS
IBS, whether paediatric or adult, is a functional gastrointestinal disorder. That means that there is no physical damage to the gut, but rather a disorder in how the digestive system is working, which can lead to a range of distressing symptoms.
Paediatric IBS often develops during adolescence, but some children develop the condition at a younger age. It is thought that up to 15% of the paediatric population suffers from this condition.
The name Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can easily be confused with Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD) which encompasses Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis, but it is a completely different condition.
Symptoms of paediatric IBS
Diagnosing paediatric IBS
Any children with persistent symptoms should see their medical practitioner. It is worth being aware that diagnosing paediatric IBS can be challenging, because it overlaps with other gastrointestinal disorders, and it is usually diagnosed following a process of elimination via a combination of medical history, physical examination, and tests.
If your family has any history of gastrointestinal disorders, then it is essential to share that information with your medical practitioner.
Tips for how to support your child diagnosed with IBS.
IBS in children is a real, but often misunderstood condition that can have a significant impact on a child’s daily life. Recognising the symptoms, seeking healthcare advice for proper diagnosis and nutrition support, and introducing some anxiety relief techniques are crucial to help improve quality of life.
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I’m Jessica Fonteneau, the Eczema and Digestive Health Nutrition Expert. I’ve worked with hundreds of clients to help them change their diets, better manage their flares, and find relief.
My vocation is to help those with eczema and digestive issues, because I have suffered with these interlinked conditions since I was 6 months old, and I truly know what it is like to experience these debilitating conditions.
Every client I have ever worked with has their own triggers and ideal nutrition. There is no such thing as ‘one-size-fits-all’. Whether you work with me one-to-one or use my guided tools, my objective is to help you uncover what works best for you, so that you take back control and experience relief.
My guided programmes are only suitable for adults as children have very specific nutrition requirements. I do, however, work with many child clients as part of my clinic.
I also offer two free communities for adults caring for children with eczema and digestive symptoms, feel free to come and join us and get some well-deserved support.
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