May 20, 2024

What are the most common digestive problems in childhood?


What are the most common digestive problems in childhood

In this age group, the most common digestive diseases in this age group are colic, regurgitation/gastro-oesophagal reflux, and food allergies.

– Infant colic is one of the most frustrating problems for parents since the baby cries intensely for no apparent reason. The immaturity of your digestive system can cause difficulties in evacuating gases, alteration of the intestinal flora or contraction of the muscle fibres of the intestine, generating intense discomfort in the baby. This type of colic appears around 15 days after birth and is recognized by intense crying for more than three hours a day, at least three days a week, for one week for its suspicion and three weeks for its diagnosis. Traditional agnosis. As for its treatment, remember that it is temporary; after a few weeks or months, the baby returns to normal. However, the paediatrician should examine and evaluate his history to determine another cause. It is recommended to stay calm and be with the baby in the position that is most comfortable and calm for him, such as holding him against the chest. Gentle massage of the back and abdomen and gentle rocking can help. In short, a lot of contact and affection help the little one feel better.

– GasGastro-oesophagalflux (GER) is the passage of the content in the stomach towards the oesophagus. Sometimes challenger disease can damage and irritate the oesophagus, causing pain and burning and problems swallowing food. In other cases, it can even lead to respiratory complications such as bronchitis, worsening of asthma or lung infections. When young children suffer from this pathology, they are too irritable at mealtimes due to the pain it causes. But it is one of the symptoms that lead to suspect the presence of this pathology. Therefore, it isesis essential to confuse it with infant regurgitation, which consists of the return of food back into the mouth and sometimes outside after eating, which is expected in babies, especially after feeding and at bedtime. Having a more immature barrier, they can regurgitate part of the food. It is not worrying, even if they are repeated if it is appreciated that the child’s cheerful attitude has not changed, which indicates that he has no pain or other symptoms. If you notice that his attitude is more irritable, that he is upset or that he does not gain weight, you should consult the paediatrician to assess whether it is GER disease.

– Allergy to cow’s milk protein: food allergies, along with the egg, are the most frequent during the first year of life. It is essential to differentiate between allergies mediated by IgE, which can present immediate skin and respiratory symptoms (from minutes to less than 2 hours after ingestion), and those not mediated by IgE, which usually present with digestive symptoms and more delayed (from days to weeks) and be one of the triggers of infant colic. Children who suffer from this allergy should avoid eating any product that contains milk or derivatives. The usual recommendation for breastfed infants is that the mother eats a diet free of these foods. In the case of being breastfed with artificial formula, it will be replaced by special procedures callehydrolyseded. From the SVP, they warn that the infant’s formula should not be replaced by vegetable drinks, which entail nutritional alterations that can be very dangerous, nor by goat or sheep milk due to cross-reactions. Foods that cause more allergies in children are eggs, nuts and fish. To avoid allergic reactions in sensitized patients, it is essential to read food labels well and check that the chosen food does not contain any al rgens. It is also preferable to opt for fresh foods instead of processed ones since, in addition to being less healthy,

Preschool children

At these ages, the most common digestive problems are constipation, celiac disease, and chronic abdominal pain, according to SEPEAP data:


Young children often have constipation problems, which are usually associated with stages such as starting school or removing the diaper, for example, which alter their behavior and routines. It is also common for the child to go to the bathroom less often due to embarrassment if he is away from home because she is distracted or feels pain during defecation and tries to avoid the moment. To decide what is considered constipation, the reference is usually the limit of three stools a week or the painful evacuation of hard stools. When it is observed, it is better to act as soon as possible to avoid the appearance of wounds. It is always better to consult the pediatrician for these problems, rule out that the constipation is due to some disorder, and give him the necessary guidelines to favour intest favor transit.

Celiac Disease:

It is a pathology of autoimmune origin that causes damage to the intestinal mucosa when consuming gluten. This component is a part of the protein fraction found in wheat flour, barley, rye, and derivatives. According to statistics, many affected people may be undiagnosed because their symptoms are often poorly expressed and appreciated. The symptomatology that can alert us to possible celiac disease is gastrointestinal: diarrhoea, altered stools, abdominal distension… Due to the poor absorption of nutrients, weight gain can stagnate. These children need to follow a strict gluten-free diet. You have to read the labels well to make sure that you do not consume any product that has gluten or traces of it. Likewise, It is just as important not to use the same utensils or cook gluten-free and gluten-containing foods in the same containers, as they could be contaminated with trace amounts. It is also recommended to store gluten-free food in different places.

Chronic abdominal pain is a varied set of pathologies based on the brain-microbiota-intestine axis. Stress factors, such as bullying and others, can act as triggers or maintainers of the process and aggravating factors. For example, when the minor suffers from it, he suffers from intense abdominal pain that occurs continuously over time for no apparent reason. This diagnosis is confirmed when there are preliminary indications for other problems such as irritable bowel syndrome, functional dyspepsia or abdominal migraine. After the pediatric examination, another condition cannot explain the pain.

Preteen boys

Entering preadolescence, functional constipation and abdominal pain remain the two most predominant digestive pathologies. Still, due to their importance, infection by Helicobacter pylori and inflammatory bowel disease must be added. The latter is a chronic inflammation of the intestine, known: as ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and indeterminate colitis. According to the SEPEAP Guide, this pathology has tripled in the pediatric population in recent years.

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