Functional Constipation

Functional constipation in children is very common, and affects 1 in 10 children. Constipation in children happens without any particular physical or genetic cause. Our research-based resources can help you manage your child’s constipation symptoms and understand when to get help. Symptoms can include:

  • Difficult or painful poops
  • 2 or less poops in the toilet per week 
  • 1 or more poop accidents per week
  • holding in poop
  • very big poops

Caring for a child with functional constipation

Follow Ari’s story in this video to learn about functional constipation’s symptoms, management, and treatment. 

This video was created by ECHO Research with support from ARCHE, and TREKK. Funding was provided by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

This infographic provides information about functional constipation’s definition, diagnosis, treatment, and when to take your child to a doctor. 

This infographic was created by ECHO Research with support from ARCHE. Funding was provided by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).


The information contained in the video/multimedia content (the “Multimedia”) is provided on an “as is” basis and is offered for general information and educational purposes only; it is not offered as and does not constitute professional advice. There is no guarantee about the accuracy, applicability, fitness or completeness of the information found in the Multimedia. This information is provided without warranty of any kind, and the University of Alberta, its agents, employees, and students disclaim responsibility to any party for any loss or damage of any kind that may arise directly or indirectly as a result of the use of or reliance on the information contained in the Multimedia.

These resources may not be modified, reproduced or distributed without prior written consent of ECHO Research. Contact

Physical treatments can include physiotherapy, prescribed exercise plans, strengthening exercises, massage, and more. 

Psychological treatments can include counselling or talk therapy, supportive therapy, cognitive behaviour therapy, mediation, and more. They can be provided on a one-on-one basis or in a group setting.