Why Is My Baby Constipated?
My Baby is Constipated.
Constipation is quite common in babies and happens when faeces (or poo) becomes hard and firm and your baby will be in pain when they need to poo and will also not poo as often as usual.
Symptoms of constipation in babies
- Small dry hard stools or poo.
- Pain when passing stools
- Passing wind a lot
- Appetite not as good
- Low energy
Usually a breast-fed baby will not become so easily constipated, as breast milk contains a bacteria that helps babies to digest it. This means that poo is softer and easier to pass. There is also a hormone in breast milk that helps baby's bowels to move and empty.
A bottle-fed baby will usually have fewer poos, because formula milk can be harder to digest.
If your baby is constipated, it can be very stressful both for you and baby.As you care for your baby, you will come to know what is normal for your baby. Some babies will poo once a day while for others, it may be only twice a week.
You should only give your baby something if the long period in between poos is causing them pain or discomfort.
Constipation can become chronic if not treated so it is wise to talk to a health professional if you are concerned.
When baby is constipated
When your baby does become constipated and then does a poo that causes baby pain, they may start holding it in. This means the food stays even longer inside. The poo in baby's bowel then absorbs more water, which makes it even harder to pass and makes baby even more constipated.
If your baby is constipated, they will very often have colic or pain and also may not want to eat. Sometimes they may even be a little sick. So what can I do if my baby is constipated?
- Tummy Massage. Massage your baby's tummy in a clockwise direction with baby moisturizing cream .
- Give your baby a warm bath. This helps baby to relax.
- Give cooled boiled water to drink.
- Move your baby's legs in a cycling motion.
- If severe, your doctor may prescribe Lactulose.
- 1/2 teaspoon prune juice in water.
As baby gets older and is eating different types of food, constipation should be less of a problem. Introducing fiber-rich foods, such as fruit and vegetables, will help prevent your baby from becoming constipated.