[Q&A] Psychological or health problems?

Question: Dear doctor?

My boy is 5 years old now. He was very happy to go to school last year. However around 2 months ago, he start getting “cranky” we reach school and at home. Normally, he pass motion 1-2 time every day, but he pass-motion 3-5 times per day since that time. I don’t think he encounter problems in school because he always share his stories with me after coming back from school. Is anything worry him or this is the signal of health problems? Please advise me.

Thank you.

Answer: Dear Sunny, It is not easy to ascertain the problem without further information. It is clear that he has no separation anxiety issue because he was happy to go to school. However, you need to explore whether situations have changed in school which makes him unhappy in school. If you are sure he has no problems ( able to tell you stories), no bullies, no harsh teachers, then let’s focus on the circumstances surrouding his crankiness. Did he become cranky because he needs to go toilet urgently? How about passing urine? Did he lose weight and pass more urine recently? how about his appetite? Need to examine his stools. If he goes to toilet to pass motion every 3-5 times a day, with normal looking stools, good appetite with no tummy pain, then it is unlikely a problem. However, if otherwise with any doubts to the question I asked you, then it is possible it could be related to some bowel issues that he is passing motion more frequently than before. Being unhappy, being stressed can be manifested by ‘organic’ symptoms like constipation/diarrhoea although not common. I suggest you explore the possibilities by talking to him, his teachers, examine his stools and subsequently, to consult a doctor. Hope this information helps.