Caring for a baby is the most amazing experience in anyone’s life. All little things about your baby matter a lot. Whether it is his nutrition, sleeping habits or growth. If lately your baby seems in distress, it is worrying you because he is the center of your world. Your baby is probably constipated and you are thinking, “What to do when baby is constipated?” Do not worry because we are going to provide you some solutions to relieve your baby from constipation. Read further to understand in detail to keep your baby always happy and smiling.
Signs That Your Baby Is Constipated:
- Feeling irritated or in pain before passing stools. Also, accompanied by discomfort and crying.
- Poo hard and dry like pellets.
- Less than three bowel movements in a week.
- Poo and wind are smelling foul.
- Shows loss of appetite.
- The belly of your baby feels hard.
What Causes Constipation In Babies?
Babies are constipated by several due to several reasons. The reasons may be as follows:
Introduction to solid foods
Often there can develop constipation in babies when solid foods are introduced into their diet. This is just a reaction when they start adjusting to the new foods. Foods that are low in fibers and lack sufficient fluids also add to the constipation.
A baby’s who is fed formula milk is more prone to constipation because formula milk is more difficult to digest compared to breast milk. It makes poo bulky and firm. There are minimum chances that a breastfed baby gets constipated. Even if the baby hasn’t passed stools for a few days, breast milk will produce a softer stool.
A baby who is teething refuses breast milk and also develops a throat infection, a thrush, an ear infection or a cold. If the baby has got a bit older, he may not be drinking milk in sufficient amounts or may not be consuming enough fluids or water with the diet. Thus, he gets dehydrated and his poo becomes hard and dry. It becomes difficult to pass stools for him.
Illness or a medical condition
Constipation can also be sometimes a symptom of food poisoning, food allergy or a problem in the absorption of food by his body. All these are metabolic disorders that may develop constipation. In very rare situations, congenital conditions can cause constipation in babies.
When To See A Doctor If Baby Is Constipated?
If occasionally the hard poo of your baby becomes very uncomfortable for your baby, contact your pediatrician. Otherwise, occasional but easy-to-pass and soft stools are not actual constipation. Do not give a laxative to very small babies without consultation of a doctor. Also, see a doctor if the baby is not eating, starts losing weight or has blood in the poo.
What Are The Exercises To Relieve Baby from Constipation?
1. Bicycle Legs
Make your baby lie down on his back. Hold his legs lightly in a half-bent position. Gently and slowly start moving your baby’s legs in a way that he is riding a bicycle. This exercise can help to relieve your baby from gas too.
2. Tummy Massage
In a clockwise direction, rub and massage your baby’s tummy gently. Put your fingers on your baby’s navel and give a massage making circular motions. Move your hands away and out from the central point of baby’s tummy. Alternate tummy massage with bicycle legs.
3. A Warm Bath
It is suggested by many medical experts that you should give a bath to your baby with warm water. Doing this may relax the baby and get the stools moving again. While you are drying the baby, give him a tummy massage.
Top 5 Home Remedies For Baby Constipation
Increase the amount of water that you give to the baby. If your baby is less than 6 months old, give him 1 oz of water that is boiled and then cooled, once or twice in a day. If your baby is more than 6 months, give him the same kind of 2 oz of water, once or twice a day.
Adding sugar to the diet of the baby, in one form or the other is an age-old practice. It is recommended even in present times. Sugar has a characteristic to draw excessive fluid into baby’s stools. So the stools become soft. Sugar in any form can work. For example, from fruits or juices or sugarcane, or in the form of sorbitol, fructose, sucrose etc.
Generally, it is suggested that sugar or corn syrup should be added to baby’s formula. Instead, we recommend to give it in small proportions of cooled boiled water for the following reasons:
- The excessive water is helpful to make stools soft
- If the baby gets habituated to consuming sweetened formula, he may deny drinking the formula without sugar or corn syrup, in future.
It is to be noted that honey should not be given as sugar to babies under 12 months of age, due to a higher risk of getting botulism.
3. Fruit Juices
Give diluted apple juice, prune juice or pear juice to your baby to relieve him from constipation. Remember, other fruit juices are not effective enough to treat constipation. Add cooled boiled water to any of such fruits till the strength of the fruit reduces to 1/4th. When the baby gets accustomed to it, increase the fruit strength to 1/2.
Well, it is not recommended to give diluted juices to babies under the age of 2 months. You can give diluted fruit juices to babies of 2-6 months of age, twice a day. Give in fewer amounts initially, as too much of fruit juice can cause problems like bloating, gas and diarrhea.
Fruits like prunes, pears, peaches, plums, apricots, peas etc. help to make stools softer. On the other hand, foods like rice cereal, carrots, applesauce, squash, bananas etc. make the stools firmer. If your baby is less than 9 months old, do not give citrus fruits like grapefruits, oranges and pineapple. Such fruits have acids that can be harmful to their tummies.
5. High Fibers
Give foods that are high in fiber content, so that the bowel movement of your baby becomes normal.
We hope that by going through this article, you might have got a clear idea about What to do when baby is constipated? If you have any suggestion or query, feel free to drop it in the comment box below.