Ahhh, poop! One of the “joys” of motherhood. If you’re a first time mom, you’ll probably have lots of questions about this and other aspects of newborn care.
Some of these topics aren’t the most glamorous, with poop being one of them!
If you’re concerned about your baby not pooping or notice constipation symptoms, here are some tips to help!
How to Know if Your Baby is Constipated
If your baby is fussy, and you suspect they might be constipated look out for these signs and symptoms to help you confirm:
- Less frequent bowel movements
- Clay-like poop
- Stool that looks like hard pellets
- Straining or crying when baby tries to poop
- Red blood in stool
- Baby doesn’t have an appetite
- Baby’s belly is firm or hard
When baby exhibits any of these symptoms, it’s time to try some methods to help out!
Ways to Help Your Baby Poop
Here are some at-home remedies to try to get your baby to have a bowel movement:
- Exercise baby’s legs. Gently pump their limbs back and forth and move them around like a bicycle. This can help loosen stool and stimulate movement.
- Give your baby a warm bath. This can help relax baby’s abdominal muscles and relieve straining.
- Try a tummy massage. This can also stimulate movement and relax the abdominal muscles and may provide some relief from pain.
- Give them water or juice. Water and fruit juice are great, natural laxatives. Give baby small servings that they are able to tolerate and stick to 100% prune, pear or apple juice.
- Add more fiber to their baby food. Try blended prunes or peas and whole wheat, barley and multigrain cereals.
- You can also try gripe water. This can help soothe baby’s tummy and relieve gas. Experts still aren’t sure how or why gripe water works, but mothers have been swearing by it for decades!
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When To Be Concerned
According to the Mayo Clinic:
“If infant constipation persists despite dietary changes or is accompanied by other signs or symptoms — such as vomiting or weakness — contact your baby’s doctor.”
Most often, constipation is just a temporary and unfortunate event in baby’s life and it will be over soon.
Try these methods out and give it some time!
And always remember to call your doctor if you have any concerns. They can often provide suggestions and help right over the phone.