Gastric Problems and Child Behaviour
A new study by University of California has found that common gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms such as diarrhea, constipation and bloating are linked to troubling sleep problems, self-harm and physical complaints in pre-school children. These GI symptoms are much more common and potentially disruptive in young kids with autism. Multiple GI symptoms were associated with increased challenges with sleep and attention, as well as problem behaviours related to self-harm, aggression and restricted or repetitive behaviour in both autistic and typically developing children. The severity of these problems was higher in children with autism. The study found no link between GI symptoms and the children's cognitive development or gender. GI symptoms were equally common in male and female preschool children.