Everything You Need To Know About Constipation In Babies.

Vector cartoon boy sitting in the bathroom with pain in the stool because of constipation.

There is nothing more distressing than when you start to notice changes in your baby’s stool.
Where your baby had a bright yellow runny poop, all of a sudden it changes color becomes hard. In some cases, some babies even strain when trying to poop.
The most frightful is when your baby who would usually poop once or twice now poops once in 3 days or more. I know the kind of crazy thoughts that could run through your mind 😁 I don’t even want to mention the outrageous thoughts that ran through mind. Thinking about them is hilarious to me now.

I will ease those fears with this post so continue to read along. Be sure to save and share this post with mommas you know might be going through this.

It’s usually very normal when these changes happen with your baby’s poop especially once they begin taking solid foods.
The appearance, smell and texture of their poop will change quite dramatically so have no fear Mama.

Here are a few of the changes that will occur.

What to expect when baby is introduced to solids.

  1. It’s stools will often be the colour of the food eaten.
  2. It may also contain small pieces of undigested food.
  3. The frequency with which they pass stools may change too – sometimes a baby can go a few days without a bowel movement.

Now all these mentioned above does not necessarily mean your baby is constipated. If the poop is soft when it finally appears, then it is very likely that things are going on fine, neither does straining while trying to poop indicate constipation. All these are quite common reactions your baby will exhibit as it adjusts to the new texture and firmness of its stools.

But baby constipation can arise as his intestines learn to cope with this new form of nutrition being introduced.

The resulting hard stools can sometimes tear the delicate skin around the anus. These tiny but painful tears can cause your baby to sub-consciously hold back his stools.

Unfortunately, this compounds the problem – his body will absorb the water from these stools, making them even harder, plus the large amount of stools in the intestine will cause discomfort and pain.

Signs to look for.

  1. Stools are hard and dry. This is probably the clearest indication of constipation in baby.
  2. Your baby cries as he “poos” – straining might be normal, but crying indicates a greater discomfort that needs investigating.
  3. Your baby seems unwilling to feed and is generally unhappy.
  4. Blood is visible in, or on, the stools.
    REMEMBER – If your baby is displaying any of these symptoms, discuss them with your doctor.

Now, let’s look at simples home remedies you can use to to relieve your baby’s discomfort and prevent it happening too.

Home Remedies For Baby Constipation.
ALWAYS OBTAIN THE CONSENT OF YOUR CHILD’S DOCTOR BEFORE INTRODUCING NEW FOODS, JUICES OR WATER TO YOUR BABY.

  1. My first remedy to babies who have just been introduced to solids is that they should be given lots of clean water to aid bowel movement. After every meal and intermittently during the day.
  2. Try giving your baby cereals with high fiber e.g oats, barely or mixed grain cereals.
  3. I usually suggest starting with easily digestible purées like banana, avocado or sweet potato as your baby’s first food and then gradually graduate to cereals.
  4. Make your baby’s food a bit runny ( light in texture )
  5. For mums who have access to prune, you can make prune purée as it’s very good at aiding bowel movement.
  6. Offer fruit or vegetable purée about twice a day.

Offer other foods that help soften stools – these include pears (a gentle but effective option that we recommend trying first), peaches, apricots, plums, cherries and peas.

Physical remedies you can try to help ease your baby’s constipation are;

💩Massage baby’s tummy gently, in a clockwise direction, starting at his navel and moving outwards.
💩Give him a warm bath – this will make him feel relaxed (if he enjoys his baths!) and you can continue the massage technique to “get things moving” and relieve discomfort.
💩 ‘Cycle’ baby’s legs – this exerts gentle pressure on his intestines by moving the muscles in his tummy. Simply put him on his back, hold his legs and turn them gently, but quickly, in a cycling motion.
💩 If hard stools have caused tears to baby’s anus, alert his doctor and use Vaseline to protect his delicate skin.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Constipation in babies should always be checked out by a medical professional,to rule out any underlying cause.

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