08-01-2006, 08:45 PM
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Alberta, Canada
Re: Help! My ds is constipated!
We are out of this stage now, but my dd was seriously an every 10 to 14 day pooper starting when she was 5wks old. I obsessed about it and worried... would take her to the dr. & her dr. would check her & say she wasn't constipated, just didn't have to go yet. And sure enough, when she'd go it would be soft. I wrote up this post and saved it awhile ago when responding to another mom... it's quite lengthy, but explains in pretty good detail why bf babies can go so long without pooping and what's normal in terms of behavior, fussing, when to worry etc...
When my dd was ebf she was an every 9 or 10 day pooper, although she did go 14 days a couple of times. We had her checked at the dr. a few times because I couldn't stop obsessing, but we were always told everything was normal. I should also add that now the my dd is 2 she poops normally every day or 2 on her own.
Bm is so completely digested that there isn't a lot of waste left. Unless the poop is hard & like little pellets when your ds poops, then there's nothing to worry about. Even the straining is normal - it takes some practice for babies to figure out how to coordinate the muscles used to poop.
Technical reason for this is that colostrum is a natural laxative. Once your milk comes in the colostrum gradually decreases until around 5 or 6 weeks when it's pretty much gone and you're left with "mature milk." Up until this point the colostrum has been triggering the poop reflex, so once it's gone, ebf babies often don't feel the urge to go until they're "right full up" so to speak. Of course this doesn't happen to all babies - just some mom's get lucky enough to only clean a poopy dipe once a week.
So, basically, pooping once every 2 weeks is just as normal as pooping multiple times a day for a bf baby. Rectal stimulation or glycerine suppositories in general shouldn't be used in an ebf baby. Similar idea to what happens when adults use laxatives frequently - if you're giving artificial stimulation to cause your dc to poop then their little body never learns to go on it's own and can become dependent on the stimulation.
There are rare circumstances where an ebf baby can become constipated, and if it happens you'd likely see a fever develop, a hard tummy and unusual fussing & prolonged crying. If that were to happen you'd want to take your dc to see the dr. anyways and not just try to treat it at home.
You might notice that your dc passes some real stinky toots when it's been awhile since their last poop, this is really a good sign that their intestines are moving properly and isn't anything to worry about. Grunting and straining can also be normal just because babies have to figure out how to actually work the proper muscles so that they can poop. My dd fussed a couple of minutes right before every poop because she just plain didn't like going. Now that she's older & on solids it doesn't even phase her though.
So long story short, unless your dc has hard pellet like poops then he's not constipated. Anywhere up to 21 days can be normal. Just look out when he does go because it'll likely be a big mess. I have to admit that when dd would be going on day 10 and still hadn't pooped I'd be scared to take her anywhere for fear of where we'd be when she pooped
Trudy - Wife to Keith & mommy to Jillian and Jonas.
Canadian Children Restraint Systems Technician Instructor
Last edited by snowbird25ca; 08-01-2006 at 08:49 PM.