Are children’s ‘poo issues’ increasing? - Lynda Hudson - Hypnotherapist
Are children’s ‘poo issues’ increasing?

Are children’s ‘poo issues’ increasing?


Or is it just that parents are becoming much more open about these problems?

There are more articles about such issues these days whereas in the past, embarrassment meant that parents didn’t often discuss such personal problems.

There probably isn’t a dramatic increase in the poo problem itself but …

Personally, I do think that parents are much more open about this problem these days and maybe there isn’t actually a dramatic increase in the ‘poo problem’ itself. But there is certainly a lot more talking about it!

Parents are desperate to find help

My in-box has more and more ‘poo enquiries’ from desperate parents and I seem to have become the ‘go-to-person’ for hypnotic help. I completely understand this sense of desperation since the problem often seems to worsen day by day but of course the parents’ anxiety itself can only make it even worse because anxiety is horribly catching!

Anxiety of one kind or another is at the bottom of this problem (sorry about the pun!) The most usual one is this:

Having had one really painful experience, or worse, several painful experiences, the child is quite naturally fearful of it happening again. So, in order to avoid the pain, they ignore the impulse to use the toilet and withhold the stool. This can continue for several days (even weeks in the worst cases I have encountered!)

What can make it worse?

Embarrassment and being asked to keep talking about it makes it worse as some children find the whole issue of poo ‘disgusting’

Over-anxious parental concern and questioning about the problem can make it worse

Parental insistence on their child sitting on the toilet after every meal can make it worse for some children

Occasionally some parents will get angry with their child which of course then increases everybody’s anxiety

Dislike or fear of using school toilets can lead to withholding and then it becomes more painful later as the poo hardens and is difficult to pass

An over reliance on medication can upset the child

What can make it better?

If it’s really bad, obviously a trip to the doctor would be essential but doctor or no doctor it could be worth thinking about hypnotherapy either through a tailor-made audio story on its own … definitely this is best for the very young. Or, having an in person or online session with me plus a tailor-made audio to back it up. I believe regular listening to the story is massively helpful.

I don’t have a general audio for this as it is essential to personalise each audio for each individual child.

My tailor-made audios for bedtime listening have helped very many children overcome the problem

If your child is too young for an in-person session (under six for example) then I ask you, the parent to fill in a detailed questionnaire and you and I have a telephone or zoom discussion. Then I will make them a tailor-made audio and this often proves to be a very good answer. The audio is completely geared to the individual child and their age, likes and dislikes.

I invent a story in line with your child’s particular interests, usually a gentle, magical story if young, or if older, a story involving one of their heroes. These are usually very successful.

The story will include unobtrusive hypnotic suggestions and is all about the individual child, so generally they really like listening and usually they get good results. They may need more than one audio over several weeks of listening. I cannot give you a 100% promise it will be the answer for every single child, but I can truthfully say that usually it is very successful.

For more information (with no pressure), please contact

I am author of ‘Scripts and Strategies in Hypnotherapy for Children’ and an experienced hypnotherapist who specialises in working with children.

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