What causes baby constipation is quite broad . Constipation in babies is common when the baby has been introduced to solid food. Note that it is less likely for a breastfed baby to have symptoms of constipation. However , constipation can also be as a result of blockages in the digestive tract, or when your baby’s intestinal muscles are not functioning properly.
Nevertheless , stress also can affect your baby ,thus from traveling and from heat ,once again this causes constipation in your baby. Last but not least we have “diarrhea”, which is a contributor to constipation in babies. Thus , after loosing a lot of fluids due to it ,babies tend to get dehydrated and constipated as well.
There are mainly two groups of baby category that we can use to compare the other likely causes of constipation in a much simpler and clearer way. That is; Constipation in breast fed babies and Constipation in formulate fed babies . The reason why I have categorized these two types of babies is because , all their end results differ. This is mainly due to the difference in the nutritional content of the milk that both baby groups consume. However , I am going to begin by looking at;
The causes of constipation in a breastfed baby:
Though it is has been discovered that , it is extremely rare for an exclusively breastfed baby to be constipated. We still have a few factors that might leed to constipation in breastfed babies. Firstly , if your baby is not feeding enough breast milk , or not suckling well it might lead to both dehydration and constipation. Mainly because , breastfed baby milk contains water and other rich nutrients that are meant to be absorbed by the baby’s system. So if not well fed sufficiently the baby with constipation will dehydrate hence leading to constipation.
Secondly , on the same account , though extremely rare medical condition issues such as having an abnormality in the digestive tract , can cause constipation as well in babies.
Thirdly ,constipation in breastfed babies usually takes place after the introduction of solid foods into the baby’s diet. That is from , 6 months and above. Because , constipation has become a thing in most of our babies . I urge you to do nutrition research on the types of food you want to start with; when you introduce solids to your baby’s diet. As a matter of fact , when introducing solids to your baby . There are , however , different types of specified foods that recommended for babies to start on . And also other foods that you must avoid in order limit constipation in your baby.
I am going to give a list of a few foods that that you must avoid whatsoever. Particularly when it comes to your little 6 month old baby.
Rice cereal;causes baby constipation.
Rice is a delicious cereal , and also considered as a traditional staple food in various countries around the world . But , in as good as it tastes and how much it looks appealing on a plate , it is still a no go for babies . The cereal is binding, meaning that it absorbs water in the baby’s digestive gut , making it extremely difficult for baby to pass stool . Moreover , do try to switch to other cereals that are more friendly to the baby’s system. Other cereals like barley and oatmeal will be a good replacement for your favorite rice on your plate, but not on babies plate!.
These sweet and tasty nutritional fruits, though soft, smooth and easy to swallow. Bananas still are a culprit when it comes to constipation in babies . They can be very tempting yet a major cause of baby constipation . These delicious fruits are found everywhere and almost all year round ,you can find them in the grocery store. They tend to complete the look in the fruit and veggies section when you go shopping.
Nevertheless , since we now know about our culprit fruit . We are going to try and switch to something else or yet even , try to serve the banana in a pureed form but mixed with water , fruit juice and plain yoghurt. Liquids are important to your baby’s body as they will aid the digestion process and in turn help your baby pass their stools more easily.This will do the trick . Your baby will get to enjoy the delicious banana and in turn avoid this horrible constipation!.
Pastas; causes baby constipation.
These too are considered a staple diet in a number of countries. And can be very delicious in their respective recipes . But not ideal for a baby as baby food. Pasta is considered as a low fiber food as well as bread ,rolls and macaroni, just to mention but a few. These foods can get your baby full but unfortunately , can be a major problem for your baby. As they contain little fiber . Fiber is needed in the baby’s body because it aids digestion of food and helps reduce constipation .
Goat or Cow’s milk ;
Animal milk is usually very rich in nutrients. But, this milk, however, is not perfect for your little baby especially 6-month-olds. If you are eager to try it out on your baby at least do it after your baby is about 13 months old. As your baby’s digestive tract will have developed and that too better at digesting animal milk.
Other causes of constipation to look out for.
Signs of constipation in breastfed babies.
Indications of constipation in breastfed babies are; Baby tends to cry while having a bowel movement. The passing of stool with indications of bright red blood, caused by torn anal tissue as it makes its way through. When the baby passes hard stool. The baby’s tummy tends to be firm. The babies refusal to eat, or not eating properly. When there is a prolonged absence of poop. When the baby experiences discomfort while passing dry crumbly poop.
How to prevent constipation in breastfed babies.
You can start off by breastfeeding your baby the right quantities of milk a day making sure not to overfeed or underfeed your baby. If your baby is above the age of 6 months, try and avoid feeding them foods that dehydrate and leads to consolation. Have your baby try out the ABC method; Thus feeding your baby with Applesauce, Banana puree and Cereal, and a fibre diet too will do the trick. Introducing fruits and vegetables, such as prunes and peas is of very good help.
However, it is important that you keep your baby is hydrated. Give your baby diluted 100%fruit juices or water between feeds and after feeds to keep them hydrated. Regular baby exercise is good. You exercise your baby by doing cycling exercises. This is done by getting hold of the baby’s legs and moving them in a cycling motion whilst the baby is lying on her back. By so doing, you will have assisted your baby and helped stimulate his or her bowel movements. Furthermore, you can try and gently massage your baby’s belly, again this eases the risk of constipation in your baby.
Constipation in formula fed babies.
What causes constipation in formula-fed babies is almost similar to what causes it in breastfed babies as well. Likewise, if your baby is making straining faces and has a firm belly that is painful when you touch it. Be sure to know that her intestines could be backed up. Your baby could also have constipation if she refuses to eat or eats less than usual. Then lastly, If he or she cries when trying to poop and tries to push hard, and nothing is coming out then it also means that the baby is constipated.
What Causes Constipation in formula fed babies?
Although it is said to be rare, for a baby on an all-liquid diet to experience constipation. Research has shown that it can be possible for a baby to constipated while on such a diet. However, formula-fed babies are much more likely to have trouble from constipation, than babies that are on a breastfeeding diet. Formula milk firms up baby stool more than breast milk. If formula milk is not properly diluted it may cause constipation. Add the right quantities of water so that your baby is hydrated.
Causes of constipation in formula fed babies;
- Milk protein allergy.
- A lactose intolerance.
- Some underlying medical conditions.
- Lack of enough iron.
How to ease constipation in formula fed babies.
In order to ease constipation in formula-fed babies at home (you need to consult your baby caregiver or doctor to try and help your baby) is by introducing good foods that prevent your baby from getting constipated; like 100% prune, apple, or pear juice diluted with water. Also, getting your baby some barley, cereal, sweet potatoes, prunes, pears, peas, beans, and broccoli to eat is a good idea. Since these foods, all contain good quantities of fibre.
Never the less, some babies have sensitive intestines. Which results in allergic reactions and digestion problems. Hence, making them react badly to certain formula milk brands. When this happens, changing the formula milk for your baby will do them good. Your baby’s stool may improve when you; add a tablespoon of organic adult prune juice or one ounce of water into the formula. You can do this, once or twice a day (never dilute the formula more than that). Moreover, try and give your baby a few extra ounces of water.
Furthermore, also give your baby regular exercises by giving them simple baby bicycle rides. To help them relax the muscles when pooping. These bicycle rides can be fun for babies as you play with them. To do the exercise I used to; get hold of my babies legs and gently press them on her knees down to her stomach, a few times and again repeatedly until I got a stool pass. And it would work for my baby.
Moisturize the baby’s back.
Sometimes I would resort to applying some Vaseline petroleum jelly around her pooping area. And usually, this method would give me a positive result as well. As it would lubricate the area and leave it moisturized, hence, no cracks. My baby would usually respond by pushing down and passing stool swiftly.
Introduce fruits and vegetables.
However, Introducing organic fruits and vegetables to your baby’s menu will also help you prevent constipation in their system.