The nature of an infant’s stool changes with time. As he/she grows older and is introduced to different foods, the stool changes color and texture. Normally some amount of mucus is present in the stool. However, it is not visible to the naked eye. Visible mucus is actually not a good sign. There are plenty of things which cause mucus in stool.
Read More: Why Is My Baby’s Poop Green?
What is Mucus in Stool?
Mucus is a colorless sticky substance which can be found in your child’s stool. It is created by the mucus gland present in the large intestine. The actual purpose of the mucus is to maintain the lubrication of the inner lining of the large intestine. The slipper nature of the mucus allows the stool to easily pass from your child’s anus.
However, due to some anomalies the mucus might become visible in your child’s stool. If there is a large amount of white sticky substance coming out with your child’s stool then you must consult the pediatrician on an immediate basis.
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Causes and Remedies for Mucus in Stool for Children
What does mucus in stool look like?
Mucus is a white sticky substance. So, if your child’s stool is carrying mucus then either the stool will appear to be quite loose or there will be white concentrated lumps associated with the stool.
Normally the lumps are attached to the stool and they make the stool appear sticky.
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8 Common Causes of Mucus in Stool of Toddler
There are many causes which makes the mucus visible in a child’s stool. The inflammation of the mucus membrane of the large intestine can make mucus visible in the stool. Ulcer formation in the large intestine causes this. Then there can be cases of bacterial infection. Hemorrhoids and anal fissure are also responsible for causing mucus in the stool.
Some types of bowel disorders are also responsible for creating mucus in the stool. Food poisoning is also another cause for having mucus in the stool. There might be instances that the bowel path is obstructed and hence causing mucus to appear in your child’s stool. Parasitic infestation is also another cause. Mucus in your child’s stool can also be triggered due intolerance of certain foods. You need to be wary of them and consult your doctor.
Certain bacterial infection might as well trigger the presence of mucus in your child’s stool. This type of bacterial infection will be associated with severe abdominal cramps and also fever. This kind of infection is also associated with diarrhea. In either case, this symptom will cause grave discomfiture for your child.
If your child is suffering from anal fissure then also there are chances that his/her stool will contain mucus. In such cases, traces of blood will also be present in the stool. Do check with the doctor if similar situation pops up.
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It is also another disease related to the bowel movement disorder. Excess mucus will be observed in the stool. Along with that there will major abdominal cramps. Your child might also lose serious weight. The ailment might also trigger diarrhea in your child. A study conducted by Veres & Kolho (2014) suggests that this disease can take serious turn for your child. That is why it is important that you take the traces of mucus seriously and report it to the doctors.
There are certain parasites which causes excess mucus in your child’s stool. Your child will suffer from very frequent bowel movement. The stool will be sticky due to the presence of mucus. Your child will suffer from abdominal pain whilst passing the stool. There are also other symptoms associated with parasitic infestation. Food and water are the main sources of such problems in children.
If your child is suffering from food poisoning then also mucus can be found in stool. Along with mucus in the stool your child will also suffer from tremendous abdominal cramps. This will be associated with vomiting, fever, and diarrhea. This is caused by the passage of bacteria with contaminated water or food. Both the bacteria and parasite enter the intestine and disturb the inner lining. This pushes the mucus in the stool.
Blood stain along with mucus is common symptoms of bowel obstruction. This happens due to impacted feces. Worms also cause similar obstructions and trigger mucus formation in the stool. So, there can be traces of small worms in your child’s stool. Look out for similar symptoms.
Mucus in stool is also a sign of food intolerance. If mucus appears in your child’s stool after having certain kinds of foods, then it can be a sign of intolerance. You just need to observe the signs. Mucus in stool, caused due to food intolerance, is not associated with any other extreme symptoms.
Read More: 15 Foods that Causes Infant Constipation
Ulcer in the Large Intestine
The most worrying cause is perhaps the presence of an ulcer on the large intestine. The mucus membrane of the large intestine swells up causing the spillage of mucus. This is indeed a concerning issue, as far as your child’s health is concerned. A study published in the North Carolina Medical Journal (2016) implies that if ulcer is the cause then the amount of mucus will be visible in naked eyes.
Increased amounts of foul-smelling and greasy mucus in the stool can also be a sign of cystic fibrosis. This condition may also make it difficult for your child to grow and gain weight and may lead to the development of excess mucus in organs, including liver, pancreas, lungs and intestines.
This can be a possible cause of bleeding in children below the age of 1 year, in which the two parts of intestines becomes enclosed into one another. This may result in bleeding stool or the stool may contain mucus. This is often treated by passing an enema through the anus or even surgery in case the prior fails.
Children affected with dysentery may suffer from fever and abdominal pain, which may also result in blood and mucus in the stool. In order to relieve your child from this, it’s important to seek medical help and take the prescribed antibiotics that can help to eliminate the bacteria.
Mucus in stool: is it to worry about?
There’s nothing to worry about if you notice a little amount of mucus in your child’s stool. Mucus is basically a jelly like substance made by the intestines that keep the colon lining moist and lubricated. However, if you notice an increased amount of mucus in the stool, it’s important that you consult a doctor.
In case, the mucus in stool is accompanied with bleeding, change in bowel habits or abdominal pain, it may be a symptom of something more serious, for instance Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis or cancer, that may require medical attention.
Can teething cause mucus in stool?
The colour, frequency and consistency of a breastfeed baby’s stool may differ. For a breastfeed baby, green stool is considered to be normal but may be a result of dietary causes. In case, your baby is teething and shows up with green stool, this is nothing to be majorly concerned about and medical treatment may not be required.
However, teething children may also suffer from mucus in their stool. This may be a cause of excess saliva and teething pain that irritates the intestines, leading to excess mucus in the stool.
When to see a doctor?
Although, there is nothing to worry about till the time your child does not show any signs or symptoms of an infection, for instance fever or blood in the stool. In case the mucus in your child’s stool is accompanied with an infection, you should immediately seek medical help.
In addition to this, any sign of dehydration is a cause of concern which may include having few wet diapers and no crying tears.
Thereby, pay attention and notice your child’s stool and if you come across any unusual symptoms, immediately contact your child’s paediatrician.
Home Remedies for Mucus in Stool
If your child’s stool contains mucus then it is clear indication that the inner lining of the large intestine is being disturbed. There are many natural remedies which will bring some comfort to your child.
Keep your Child Hydrated
Make your child drink plenty of water and healthy fluids. This will help him/her to keep the body hydrated. Extraction of mucus from your child’s body will leave the body dry. That is why the primary responsibility should be to dehydrate the body.
Feeding Pro-biotic Foods:
Mucus extraction often flushes out essential bacteria from your child’s digestive systems. That is why it is important that you feed him/her with pro-biotic foods like yogurt, curd, and pickles. This boosts up the digestive capacity. It restores normalcy.
Avoid Spicy and Oily Food
Irrespective of the cause of the problem, mucus in stool indicates that the digestive system of your child is in vulnerable state. Oily and spicy foods are hard to digest. That is why it is important that you avoid offering him/her with similar foods, at least during the recovery state.
Feed Fiber Rich Food
Fiber is good for stool formation. So, in order to ensure healthy stool formation of your child feed him/her with fiber rich foods. Whole wheat grains and fiber rich foods are good for your child.
Mucus formation can happen due to various reasons. That is why apart from the natural remedies you should also consult your child’s pediatrician. Some of the causes are quite severe. That is why you should not neglect them a bit.