3 doctors weighed in:
How long till stool softener or stimulant works?
3 doctors weighed in

Dr. Charles Cattano
Internal Medicine - Gastroenterology
2 doctors agree
In brief: Minimize stimulants
Docusate (per pdr) helps moisten & soften hard, dry stools.
It is not true laxative, but facilitates natural defecation, usually within 12 to 72 hours. This is safe & available for children over 2, & assumes normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. Change in bowels is a "red flag", like weight loss or blood in stool, that needs evaluation if persistent.

In brief: Minimize stimulants
Docusate (per pdr) helps moisten & soften hard, dry stools.
It is not true laxative, but facilitates natural defecation, usually within 12 to 72 hours. This is safe & available for children over 2, & assumes normal GI anatomy without inflammation, stenosis, extrinsic or instrinsic obstruction. Change in bowels is a "red flag", like weight loss or blood in stool, that needs evaluation if persistent.
Dr. Charles Cattano
Dr. Charles Cattano
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