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The Poo

As a doctor you spend an incredible amount of time caring for and asking questions about people’s poo. Then when you become a parent you also start to care a whole lot about your little one’s poo. Has she had one, and what color or consistency was it? When a baby first start solids, like rice cereal, the most common problem is constipation. The poor little one will exhibit some of the following signs:

  • Grunting when having a movement

  • Getting red in the face

  • Getting red-faced, straining and crying (this lets you know it really hurts)

  • Not having a movement daily or at the very most every other day

  • Having hard, nugget-like poo

  • Fussy and passing stinky gas but no movement

As parents we feel so awful for our little ones and want to make them feel better and I am no exception. About one week into starting rice cereal poor Zara got constipated. As a doctor I know the soothing techniques for this and also the things to give baby, but it still tugged at my heart strings to see her uncomfortable.

Here are my suggested options with a few commonly used techniques also thrown in: (not all things work for all babies so you may have to try a few)

  • Give a warm bath or lay a wet washcloth heated in the microwave on the tummy (always check temperature!)

  • Massage warm mineral oil warm on the tummy counter clockwise

  • Gently insert a lubricated Q-Tip into the anus and move in a clockwise circle for 5 seconds (you will usually see a bowel movement within the next hour or so)

  • Get baby a chiropractic adjustment along with massaging the low back (often mis-alignment or tight muscles will restrict movements)

  • Put pear juice in the rice cereal

  • Use probiotics for baby and mom

  • Put molasses in the baby’s bottle with milk (corn syrup is sometimes suggested but not very healthy)

  • Finally ----try an enema. This is a last resort and make sure you are home if you do this

We have used the first six options for poor Zara and she is doing great. Check out the baby probiotic the pear juice I use. Probiotics for mom need to be more specific depending on mom’s bowel movement habits so please check with your doctor on what you should take.

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