Why does constipation worsen behavior?

A common mechanism for worsening behaviors in a child with autism is a decline in brain blood pressure. Many children with autism have dysfunction of their autonomic nervous system, making it difficult for the nervous system to maintain proper blood pressure and oxygen delivery to the brain. The nervous system responds by releasing noradrenaline to boost pressure and normalize oxygen delivery. Noradrenaline is best known as the “fight or flight” hormone and can cause aggressive, anxious, irritable behavior in children.nnThere are a variety of triggers that can strain the nervous system and result in a temporary drop in blood pressure further. Pain (dental issues, abdominal cramping), infections (middle ear or sinus infections), and intestinal cramping or straining to pass stool (vasovagal reflex) are capable of dropping the blood pressure further and triggering negative behaviors.

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