Worms in Children’s Stool: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Home Remedies, Prevention
Worms in children's stool is a common problem and has always been on the rise. While there are various causes of worms in children's stool, some factors related to faulty dietary habits and lifestyle must be considered. Worms can enter into the child's digestive system and then live as a parasite. Moreover, the immune system of a child is weaker as compared to that of an adult hence these worms tend to very easily infect the intestine of a child. Treatment of worms in children's stool needs specific evaluation but can be successful if treated properly in time.
Causes of Worms in Children's Stool
Worms tend to enter into the body through contaminated food and water which contain disease causing microscopic organisms. These can be found on contaminated surfaces, which kids normally handle as well as items, which they consume. Such contaminated surfaces, which contribute to the spread of infection causing worms in children include food, drinking glasses, soiled bed sheet or linen, eating utensils, toys, dirty floor and similar items or regular use.
On entering the body, worms reach the digestive system and lay their eggs in the small intestine. The worms continue to move towards the large intestine spreading infection in the human gut. If not treated properly they further move down and reach the rectum causing pain, irritation and itching in the anus which then ends with presence of worms in children's stool.
Thus, exposure to contaminated surfaces, food and drinks are the main causes of worms in children's stool. Improper food handling, inappropriate hand washing and lowered immunity in children can increase the risk of worms in their stool.
Symptoms of Worms in Children's Stool
Presence of worms in children's stool is itself an important symptom of worm infestation in children. In addition to that there are a few associated symptoms which should be attended to.
- Tiredness and fatigue
- Bloating and crampy pain in the stomach can be a symptom of worm in children's stool
- Semi solid or soft greasy stools
- Headache and mild fever
- Loss or excessive increase in appetite.
Are Worms in Children Harmful?
Threadworms in children are not very harmful, however if not treated properly and at the right time the infection can become severe. Large number of worms in the body can cause irritability and general discomfort, which can ultimately affect the quality of life. In case of severe worm infection in girls, it can even lead to vaginal discharge, bedwetting or uneasiness while passing urine.
Treatment of Worms in Kids' Stool
With advancement in medical science, worms can be easily treated and the aim of treatment for worms in children's stool is to curb further growth of worms and perish them forever. Moreover, patient education regarding personal hygiene, particularly in infants or babies and food handling measures can help.
Medications to Treat Worms in Children
There are variety of medications that are prescribed for treatment of worms in Children depending upon type of worm and the severity of the infection.
Mebendazole is the most widely used as well as the effective medicine prescribed for worms in stool of kids. This is particularly effective in treatment of ringworm, threadworm and hookworm.
Apart from Mebendazole, other medicines commonly prescribed for worms in childrens stool are:
These medicines are better taken with medical advice.
Home Remedies to Get Rid of Worms in Children's Stool Naturally
Home Remedies always prove beneficial without any side effects and can be used in kids even. Some common ingredients found in our kitchen can act as wonderful home remedies for treatment of worms in children's stool. These include
- Papaya - This fruit is an effective home remedy to get rid of intestinal worms in children. You can prepare a mixture by powdering papaya seeds and adding 1 cup of milk and a teaspoon of honey. Make an infusion of about 250 grams of tea leaves and add it to the above mixture. Drinking this mixture thrice a week can help to provide relief from threadworms and tapeworms.
- Garlic - Raw garlic is not only a spice but also an important home remedy for any type of intestinal worms. The simplest approach is to eat raw garlic on empty stomach every morning. Raw garlic can be used in homemade spreads and dips to enhance taste along with natural cure.
- Pumpkin- An Effective Home Remedy to Get Rid of Worms in Children's Stool- This vegetable is vital and helps in treatment of tapeworms. Pumpkin seeds when crushed and mixed with half a cup of boiled water and taken regularly can bring in a lot of difference. This works better if taken empty stomach.
- Carom Seeds - Presence of worms in Children's stool can be treated naturally by consuming carom seeds. Ayurveda system of medicine recommends eating carom seeds along with jaggery.
- Indian Aloe Vera - Aloe vera is good for skin as well as helpful in getting rid of worms in children's stool. Boil the leaves of aloe vera in about half a liter of boiling water and consume this mixture every morning on empty stomach to obtain relief from worms.
- Bitter Gourd Juice - This juice, if combined with a glass of buttermilk and consumed once a day for a period of three weeks can be a great home remedy for treatment of worms in children's stool.
Personal Hygiene and Tips to Prevent Worms in Children and Adults
- Keep your surroundings clean and change bed sheets and doormats regularly
- Ensure proper lighting in the room cause worms are sensitive to light and heat and keep the curtains open during the day.
- Practice proper hand washing with clean water with a good quality anti-bacterial soap before and after changing diapers and handling food.
- Use sanitizer after using gadgets like mobile and laptops and other common surfaces to avoid cross infections.
- Avoid intake of water through hand pumps, swimming pools, rivers or ponds
- Drink boiled or RO purified water
- Change clothes regularly to avoid infection
- Toothbrushes should be kept in close containers and should be rinsed properly.
- Keeping your nails short and clean.
- Avoid thumb licking or finger biting or licking toys in kids.
Presence of worms in children's stool is a matter of concern and can happen due to a variety of causes. But proper hygienic habits, good sanitation and timely treatment can help to prevent worms in kids. Oral medication is the safest method to combat such an infection. At the same time, adopting healthy day to day habits, eating healthy food and avoiding contaminated water can bring in a lot of difference as it is rightly said 'Prevention is better than cure'!