Baby Poop

When I tell expectant parents that they will be obsessed with their baby’s bowel movements, they just laugh. And then, their baby is born and that is just what happens.
I think it will help if I give some explanation first.
Breast milk is pre digested. It passes through the baby’s digestive tract very quickly and easily.
Infant formula, on the other hand, needs to be digested and so it passes slowly.
This means that breast fed babies usually need to be fed more often – at least for the first few months.
Back to baby poop…..
The first few bowel movements the baby has after birth are called meconium, which contains the contents of the baby’s bowel during the pregnancy. It is sticky and oily. After the meconium, the stool changes and, if the baby receive exclusively breast milk, the stool looks like a stain on the diaper with some small pieces that I describe as mustard colored cottage cheese.
The reason for this….as waste passes through the digestive tract, fluid is taken out. Breast milk passes so quickly, very little fluid is taken out. Baby will have several bowel movements a day for the first few weeks. Then things start to slow down. That is when parents start to worry. They think baby is constipated because they do not have a daily BM. the parents then call the doctor and are often told to give Karo syrup in water, or add solids to baby’s diet. WRONG!!!!
Constipation is defined as hard, dry stools that are hard to pass.
If baby has a bowel movement every 5 days, and the stool is soft and passes easily, that is NOT a problem. Breast fed infants usually do not have a bowel movement daily. The longest I have seen a baby go between bowel movements is 21 days. That mom laughed that she had to stay home every 21 days as the baby pooped all day. I am not saying this is normal for all breast fed babies but just to give an example. Every baby has a different pattern. Learn your baby’s pattern and trust your instincts.

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4 thoughts on “Baby Poop

  1. Is she eating as usual, acting ok? Add a bit more fiber to your diet, maybe cut back on your intake of cheese or any other constipating foods. She is probably just at the age to start having less frequent BMs.
    If you really get concerned, try rectal stimulation. Put plastic wrap over your little finger, lubricate with KY jelly or petroleum jelly and insert just the tip of your finger into the baby’s rectum. This will stimulate baby to bear down.
    But remember, if baby is fine and stool is soft when she does go, no worries and no need to do anything.
    Keep me informed!!

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