Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Baby poo

Yeah...I know the title doesn't sound appropriate but if you're a new mom or even experienced mommy the topic is quite a relevant topic especially if you have a constipated baby in your house ;p

I supposed all babies will go through this phase whereby they will experience some kind of constipation occasionally...sometimes your baby doesn't poo for a few days which sometimes really there is nothing to worry about especially if you're breast feeding...but other babies have to struggle hard while doing their big business to the extend you can see their faces turning so red and you may have to help them ...sometimes you may even see some blood stain on his poo/ diaper...which will definately rings the panic button!! Which parents wouldn't right!!

Well, in Eli's case, it is not so much of no bowel movement for days..in fact he does poo poo almost everyday..the only thing is that his stool can be quite hard at times..we even have to help him at times as I'm afraid he will hurt his anus (pardon the language as my mind is blank and can't really thinkg of a political right word to use hee...) if we don't...this started when he starts on solid...unlike Ethan who loves water, Eli doesn't take much water...so that probably is one of the reasons...we started giving him pureed fruits such as papaya which helps a bit though...and started giving him water using spoon instead of the bottle...we have also started to give him green leafty vege such as spinach too...as of last nite...his poo still a bit hard...if you have gone through the same thing with your baby and have found a solution, please do share with me will you? :)

Anyway I got the article below from Abbott Malaysia and thought its a good article on constipation for my own reference and for the sharing...

What to Do When Your Child Has Constipation

How to recognize constiation
Hard and dry stools are the main symptoms of constipation. If your child has not had any bowel movement for 3–4 days, or strains when passing motion which consists of hard, dry stools, it's likely that your child is constipated. It gets even worse when your child’s stomach gets bloated, he/she is easily fatigued, refuses to drink milk or water, and the anus starts to crack and bleed when passing motion.
Causes of Constipation
1.Fluid intake
There is a direct relationship between the hardness of the stool and how much the intestine can withhold. Especially in the first six months after your child is born, he/she will easily get constipated due to the relatively small size of the intestines and loss of fluid. Fluid loss may occur in more obvious forms like sweating, passing urine and less obvious forms such as through the skin and breathing. Even in air-conditioned rooms, one can still lose fluid, which is one of the main factors leading to constipation. Try placing a pot of water in the room to keep the air moist. Also, make sure your child drinks plenty of water–if your child does not like drinking plain water, you can try to add some glucose.
2. Fiber intake
As your child grows older, you will start feeding him solid food, which slows down the speed in which stools pass through the intestines. During this period, water retention inside the intestines will increase, and if your child's fiber and fluid intake is insufficient, this will increase the chances of getting constipation. Therefore, when you start feeding your child solid food (around 4–6 months old), start with food that's less solid. When your child is 7–8 months old, feed your child with brown rice porridge which contains more fiber than white rice porridge, and fruit pulp rather than fruit juice. To effectively prevent constipation, feed your child with fiber-rich fruits and vegetables such as papaya, mango, banana, spinach and cucumber, grounded to a pulp.
3. Accumulation in the intestines
Even with a fiber-rich diet and plenty of water, constipation may occur due to a change of environment and missing the urge to defecate, resulting in stools staying inside the intestines for an extended period of time. When water is lost, the stools become hardened, blocking the intestines. That’s why when your child has an urge to pass motion, let him go to the toilet. Otherwise, you may need to see a doctor to treat the constipation when it gets worse.
Temporary constipation and change in bowel movement
If your child suddenly changes his bowel movement habits, or reduces his/her need to pass motion, it is normal if due to the following. After a short period of time, when your child’s intestines slowly get used to the changes, his bowel movement will return to normal. However if not, you may need to consult a doctor. Frequently seen causes leading to changes in bowel movement:
•When your child changes from breastfed milk to formula milk
•When your child starts eating solid food
•When your child switches brands of milk
•When your child’s appetite changes
•When your child’s dietary intake changes

Solving constipation problems
1. Feeding your child to stimulate bowel movement
The stomach has a very unique attribute–the stomach colon reflex. When food arrives at the stomach, this will stimulate intestinal peristalsis and ease bowel movement.
2. More water, fruit juice and soup
When constipation occurs, feed your child more water, fruit juice or soup. Especially fluids with high osmotic pressure, for example a 5-gram packet of glucose powder with 50c.c. water will stimulate bowel movement.
3. Fiber
For children who no longer treat milk as their main source of food, select fruits and vegetables rich in fiber such as spinach, tomatoes, sweet potato leaves, broccoli, burdock, guava, dates, pears and mangos. Grind these into a rich pulp and feed children younger than a year old. Such rich fiber dietary intake is good for bowel movement, especially date juice and date pulp.
4. Yogurt
If your child is six months old and has constipation, you may try feeding him some yogurt to help bowel movement.
5. Check if protein intake exceeds regular consumption
Avoid adding protein supplements into your child’s milk, to prevent constipation caused by protein overdose. Remember, water is the most important method to solve your child’s constipation problems. If fiber intake increases while water intake stays the same, your child’s constipation will get worse.
Some misunderstandings
Some mothers are worried that constipation problems are caused by milk that is unsuitable for their children. After changing milk brands, a few of the children get better, but most of them have deteriorating conditions. What’s going on? In short, different brands of milk have different ingredients. When your child switches to a different formula, the constipation seems to go away, however after the adaptation period, the constipation problem recurs again. Otherwise, some mothers use fatty food to feed their children in order to relieve constipation. Often, this will result in diarrhea. Most doctors and healthcare practitioners do not suggest using this method.
How to handle an emergency
If your child’s constipation has been going on for 3–4 days, there are firm, hard stools present at the anus, and you have already tried all sorts of food therapy but to no avail, you may try the following methods:
•Apply some Vaseline or cold cream onto a paper stick, cotton bud or anus thermometer, and gently prick around the anus to stimulate it.

If there is still no bowel movement, gently stick the thermometer 2cm deep into the anus for continued stimulation. After milkfeeding, due to the reflex of the stomach-colon, it will be easier to pass motion.

•Bowel cleansing.

This is a last resort for emergency occurrences but mothers need to ensure this does not become a habit, or else your child will slowly lose the urge to pass motion. Especially for children below 1 year old, you may need to seek help from medical personnel.

The above information is about the causes of constipation and ways to relieve it. If it is still unable to solve your child’s problem, please see a doctor immediately.


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