Monthly Archives: October 2014

4 Children’s Books to Improve Your Child’s Bathroom Habits

As you know from my previous post, we are SUPER excited to be rolling out our Pediatric Pelvic Floor Program. With that being said, my next few posts are going to cater to this specific population–with this first being an introduction to a few books that I think are awesome for helping kids with bladder and/or bowel problems.

First, let me say that I LOVE children’s books. I love the photos, the stories, the fantasy–I have many wonderful memories of my mother and father reading classics like Goodnight, moon!, The Rainbow Fish, and  Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Maybe that’s why I loved seeing all of the children’s books specifically written to help kids with bathroom health. Regardless, here we go– 4 books to improve your child’s bathroom habits (in absolutely no particular order).

1.) Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi

Everyone Poops

What child doesn’t love a book with the word “poop” in the title? Everyone Poops is perfect for the child who is embarrassed of having to have a bowel movement. Although embarrassment may not seem like a big deal initially, it is important to recognize that for some children, embarrassment could be the start of a pretty big problem. Often children who are embarrassed to have a bowel movement will develop chronic holding patterns which can create painful hard stool, bowel leakage, and difficulty having bowel movements. I love Everyone Poops because it’s funny, fun, and normalizes having a bowel movement to take away the fear. Plus, it only costs $4.99 on Amazon.com–who can say no to that?

2. Look Inside: Your Body (Usborne Look Inside)

Look Inside

Ok, I will be honest with you– this may have recently become my most favorite children’s book ever! How could it not be? It literally has over 100 flaps to open inside! When this arrived to my clinic I forced my poor student to listen to all of the fun little facts under each flap in this book. It is filled to the brim with excellent information on the body and even has a beautiful 2-page spread on the digestive system. Plus, it’s interactive–your child can lift a flap and see how the bicep muscle works…lift another flap and see how our ears hear!  My only beef is that they really did not include much information on Urinary function…but other than that, it is amazing! It may have just become my book I give all of my pregnant friends for their new kiddos. Amazon.com $10.48 and worth every penny!

3. It Hurts When I Poop: a Story for Children Who Are Scared to Use the Potty, by Howard J. Bennett

Hurts to Poop

Back to the poop– Constipation is the worst! And fear related to using the bathroom can be equally as bad as embarrassment in creating holding patterns and constipation in children. This book was written by a physician who provides a relatable story for children fearful of using the bathroom. The story follows a young boy Ryan as he goes to see a doctor to help with his constipation. Dr. Bennett also does a great job at providing great recommendations for kids and parents to help improve bowel function! I especially love his page on “foods that make poop hard” and “foods that make poop soft.” This book is an absolute must for children dealing with constipation. The reviews on Amazon.com really say it all, and this book only costs $8.96.

4. Sammy the Elephant and Mr. Camel: a Story to Help Children Overcome Bedwetting, by Joyce Mills and Richard Crowley

Sammy and Camel

How could you not love the sweet story of an elephant who struggles with carrying water, is mentored by a camel, and goes on to save the town by putting out a fire? This wonderful story not only provides a powerful image for children having difficulty with enuresis (bedwetting), but it also is great for improving self-esteem in children and decreasing feelings of guilt or low self-worth. This book also includes information in the back for helping parents take the next steps to improve a child’s bladder function. An excellent read for kids and parents alike! And only $8.96 on Amazon.com!

I hope you will consider picking up some books if your child is having bowel or bladder problems! Do you have any other great books for this? Let us know in the comments!

By Jessica Powley Reale, PT, DPT, WCS

Introducing Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy for Children!

Pediatric

We are pleased to announce that we will now be offering pelvic floor physical therapy for children in the Upstate area of South Carolina. We are very excited about this new offering and have worked hard over the past few months preparing our clinic space to accommodate children. Our PTs have also attended advanced training through Herman & Wallace Pelvic Rehabilitation Institute to learn about to apply our knowledge of treating adults with PFD to children! Our PTs are trained in working with children experiencing:

  • Urinary incontinence (loss of urine)
  • Enuresis (Night-time incontinence)
  • Urinary urgency and frequency
  • Urinary retention or voiding dysfunction (difficulty emptying)
  • Constipation (including pain with and/or difficulty emptying bowels)
  • Diarrhea (with and without leaking)
  • Constipation with fecal soiling
  • Chronic abdominal pain

We recognize that working with children requires unique considerations, and we strive to provide a comfortable setting where children and their parents can work together with their physical therapist to address their concerns. Our goal is to make Pelvic PT fun and interactive for children, and we use games, books, and prizes to help create the perfect environment for children to reach their goals.

Our physical therapy plans often will include:

  • Thorough evaluation of medical history, diet, sleeping patterns, etc.
  • Assessment of the hip and low back musculoskeletal structures
  • Visual (non-invasive) assessment of the pelvic floor muscles
  • Animated EMG biofeedback training
  • Extensive behavioral and dietary training
  • Appropriate stretching and strengthening as indicated
  • Specific individualized home program

Please feel free to contact our office at (864) 454 – 0952 with any particular concerns or questions. Pelvic Floor PTs treating children are located at our Patewood, Simpsonville, Greer and Spartanburg locations. Referrals can be faxed to (864) 454-0925.

Are you thirsty for more? Check out this post I wrote a year ago on tips for improving bathroom function in children!

Written by: Jessica Powley Reale PT, DPT, WCS

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