Constipation in the newborn: what to do if your baby suffers from constipation?

Constipation in the newborn should not be compared to constipation in an adult, especially in the first days, weeks and months of life, when it frequently happens that the stool does not pass regularly. poop and you fear that it may be a health problem, continue reading our in-depth study. Meanwhile, here is a video on the benefits of breastfeeding:

Constipation in the newborn: how to tell if your baby is suffering from constipation

Constipation in the newborn does not necessarily have to do with a health problem. To understand whether your baby suffers from constipation or not, it is important to inquire about the regularity and consistency of stools in newborns in general.

The first stools of newborns are called "meconium" and are green in color and quite viscous in consistency. Meconium is in fact made up of amniotic fluid, cell residues, urine, and everything that the baby may have ingested before birth. The newborn emits meconium for the first time 12 or 24 hours after delivery.

After about 3 or 4 days of the baby's life, the feces emitted by him have a lighter color. The consistency of the stool is liquid or otherwise creamy, and there is no strict rule on how many times your baby should defecate: it can happen after every meal, but the discharges can become less frequent day by day. In these cases, it is not necessary to immediately think that the newborn has health problems or suffers from constipation: it is completely normal for the discharges to occur irregularly, at different rates, and that between one "emission of feces and" the other may also pass several days.

It also often happens that infants turn red, cry or otherwise express a certain pain in the effort to poop: even in this case, do not panic! In most cases your baby is just learning how to defecate, contracting his muscles to get the right push ... give him time!

See also

Your baby is one year old

Constipation in pregnancy: remedies to treat it effectively

Newborn colic: causes, symptoms, and remedies to ease your baby's crying

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Constipation in the infant breastfed or infant formula

Constipation in infants can take different forms also based on the type of breastfeeding with which they are fed, whether with artificial milk or breast milk. The formula-fed baby appears to suffer more from constipation than the mother's breast-fed baby, and this is because formula milk takes longer to digest. Therefore, infant formula usually slows down the time of stool emission by infants, without therefore representing a health problem. The consistency of the stool also turns out to be harder.

If the infant fed with formula suffers from constipation, in agreement with the pediatrician, you can think of changing the type of formula that is offered, choosing a lighter formulation (especially if the baby seems to have difficulty digesting milk proteins. vaccine). In some cases, the pediatrician may also prescribe sachets to be dissolved in the bottle that are used to make the consistency of hard stools softer.

Constipation in the breastfed infant, on the other hand, is more difficult to detect. Breastfed babies, after 3-6 weeks of life, can have even one feces per week, and this is because breast milk is more liquid and easier to digest, leaving little solid waste for your child to dispose of. child.

However, symptoms of possible constipation in the breastfed infant to watch out for include frequent and prolonged crying, refusal to latch on to the breast, a hard and distended belly, blood in the stool, hard stools, rectal bleeding and weight loss. In these cases it is always good to contact your pediatrician.

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Natural remedies if your baby is suffering from constipation

Constipation in the newborn can worry a new mother, of course! Remember, however, that in most cases this is not a health problem for your baby at all and that staying calm and not being anxious about it will also be crucial to their well-being!

Do-it-yourself stimulation methods should be completely avoided: no, therefore, to the natural remedies of the grandmother such as the famous parsley stalks to be used to stimulate the rectum, and no to the use of purgatives or laxatives, however natural. may they be! They might just irritate your baby.

The first of the natural remedies to try if you are breastfeeding your baby is to change your diet, eating more fiber and drinking more fluids: this will certainly help your milk to be richer in turn. of fibers.

If you are breastfeeding your baby with formula instead, try changing the formula under pediatric advice or varying the amount of water used to dilute it. In the event that infants suffering from constipation have difficulty defecating because they produce hard, dry or goat stools, it is good to soften them: also in this case the pediatrician can prescribe small suppositories or, among the most used remedies, mallow micro-enemas. , honey and glycerin, among the most effective.

Another of the most popular natural remedies for baby constipation is the tummy massage, a cure-all even in case of colic. Place your baby on his back in a soothing environment and massage him in a clockwise circular motion on his tummy using baby oil. At that point, lift his legs and move them as if he were pedaling, bringing them towards his chest and then stretching them.

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