Infant Constipation Symptoms And Tips On Providing Relief
Babies don’t have any other job other than being cute, eating, and yes, filling up their diapers. While most infants have no problem evacuating their bowels, in some cases it can turn into a battle. Constipation can turn even the happiest baby into a cranky ball of discomfort. Being constipated can be very uncomfortable, especially for infants. Not only will it cause them to become irritated, but it can also stop them from getting the nutrients they need to thrive. If you think that your little one may be suffering from constipation, we have some suggestions that may help you provide them with relief.
What Is Infant Constipation?
Infant constipation is pretty much the same as constipation in older children and even adults. It is not common for infants to become constipated, however, since their diet is generally fluid and smashed food heavy. Too little liquid or water in an infant's diet may cause constipation. Certain medical conditions or even food allergies can also lead to difficulty passing bowels. In most cases, instead of hard bowel movements, infants will develop less frequent bowel movements or small pellets of bowel movements. Once an infant starts taking solids or adds new food to their diet, it is more common to see changes in their digestion patterns such as the development of constipation.
Common Symptoms of Infant Constipation
Constipation in infants is generally when they are passing hard stools or are having trouble having a bowel movement at all. Some infants may struggle to pass stool and fail even after tremendous strain. Constipation in infants under the age of six months is not common, though it occurs more frequently once a child starts adding more food to their diet. It is important to note that normal bowel movements will differ between infants.
Infants from birth to about one month will have at least one bowel movement daily. As they grow older, it is common to have one bowel movement every other day. Infant abdominal muscles are not developed which can make passing stools more difficult than it is for older children. Infants will often cry or strain during a regular bowel movement, if it is soft, then the child is not constipated. Common symptoms of constipation in infants may include:
- Frequent spit-up
- Clay like stools
- Discomfort when passing stools
- Dry hard stools
- Wide, large stools
- Twisting the body
- Blood in the stool
- Stomach pain
- Pain when passing stools
- Pain when having a bowel movement
- Clenching of the buttocks
These are the most common symptoms or signs that your infant may be suffering from constipation.
Treatment Methods for Infant Constipation
The treatment for infant constipation depending largely on the age of the child. For small babies, the first thing you should try is switching infant formulas. If you are breastfeeding, change your diet to include more water and fewer starchy foods. For bottle-fed infants, switching to a gentle formula can ease the symptoms of constipation. Holle Organic Cow’s Milk is gentle and has fewer additives which make it easier to digest. Goat milk infant formula is another option.
If your baby is still too little to consume solids, but they are old enough to drink juice, give them small amounts of prune juice to help loosen their stool. For those that are still on infant formula but also able to consume baby cereals, switch to barley or oatmeal to help reduce constipation. Both are high in fiber but gentle enough on the stomach for little bellies. Never give your infant laxatives or enemas; this are serious methods that should be left to the care of a medical professional. In most cases, a small change in feeding habits should be enough to take care of any residual issues with infant constipation.
The Best Infant Formula To Help With Infant Constipation
Changing your infant formula is one way to battle and often correct infant constipation. What goes into your child’s body is certainly what will come out. Ensuring that they have a diet of gentle, easy to digest infant formula and baby food will help make their digestive problems a thing of the past. Here are a few of our top suggestions;
- Lebenswert Organic Milk Formula – This infant formula is rich in nutrients and made for easy digestion. Several stages can cover your infant from birth up to toddlerhood. The ingredients in it come from the largest organic food association in Germany, so you can rest assured that quality is guaranteed. There is no gluten and the milk proteins come from organic skim milk.
- HiPP Comfort Formula- This specialty infant formula has been created with less lactose than other infant formula products from HiPP. This will help ease digestion and irritation in infants with food sensitivities. It is a unique blend of statch and maltodextrin which gives it a consistency that is thicker. Not only will it help to soften stool, and reduce gas, it will keep your little one full, longer. HiPP’s probiotics dietary fibers (GOS) paired with hydrolyzed whey proteins work in combination with the special fat blend. It encourages more comfortable and much easier digestion.
- Holle Organic Cow’s Milk- Organic cow milk is much gentler on infant digestive systems and can actively help ease constipation. This line is formulated with organic vegetable oils that provide your infant will all the fatty acids needed for healthy development. It also works to boost the immune and very important system in today’s world. There are no added sugars, gluten, or chemicals. Holle Cow Formula is also jam-packed with additional essential nutrients your baby needs to thrive.
Final Thoughts From Mommy Formula
When your infant is in distress, it can be difficult to watch and even harder to cope with. Here at Mommy Formula is always here to offer support and advice to help you ease any infant feeding problems you may be facing. Check out our blog for more information on various common infant feeding and infant care concerns.