Your baby’s poop is an excellent indicator of his health. Mothers show concern over their baby’s bowel movement. What is typically looked out for in baby’s poop includes frequency, texture, smell, and colour. The age and diet have a lot of influence on your baby’s bowel movement and the appearance of his poop. For instance, a three-month-old baby’s poop is usually soft and slightly liquidy, especially if he is exclusively breastfed. Formula-fed babies’ poop is often a bit firmer, but not too solid.
Here is what you should know about your three-month-old baby poop.
Are there differences between breastfed and formula-fed babies’ poop?
Exclusively breastfed babies often have a yellow poop at three months. It is not strange for their poop to have a brownish or greenish tint. It may also be liquidy or watery in texture. The appearance is healthy and should not cause you worries. For instance, a green-tinted poop may be as a result of what you have eaten.
If your baby is formula-fed, at three months, he should have a poop that is paste-like, with a peanut-butter resemblance. The poop may occasionally have tints of green. This is usually as a result of the iron-fortification and is healthy. Formula-fed babies typically have smellier poop than their breastfed counterpart.
When you should be worried about your baby’s poop
If you notice your baby has a very frequent bowel movement, his poop has a watery or mucus texture, and has a lack of appetite or is feverish; then your baby may have diarrhoea.
Diarrhoea may be caused by:
- Rotavirus – one of the common causes of diarrhoea in babies and toddler, but symptoms can easily be mitigated by early vaccination.
- Parasites – micro-organic parasites like giardia can easily be picked up by babies when they insert contaminated objects or toys in their mouth. These parasites can infect the intestine, causing runny stool.
- Milk allergy – Babies can get allergic to lactose and other proteins found in milk. This condition can cause bloody stool and diarrhoea in babies. It is an abnormal immune system response to dairy products.
- Babies taking antibiotics may have mild diarrhoea. Antibiotics can eliminate the benign bacteria in your baby’s gut, causing watery poop.
Diarrhoea in babies can be treated by increasing your baby’s fluid intake (whether breast milk or formula). As per the advice of your doctor, you can supplement it with an oral rehydration solution.
When your baby loses more fluid than he consumes, then he is said to have dehydration. Babies can use up fluid very quickly. So be cautious if your baby displays the following signs: parched lips, dry mouth, fussiness, infrequent wetting of diapers, dry tears, lack of appetite and sunken fontanelles.
To treat your baby’s dehydration, breastfeed him more often. If your baby is formula-fed, continue feeding him as usual. If he vomits, contact your doctor. Oral rehydration solution should be given per your doctor’s instruction.
One common symptom of constipation is a hard pellet-like poop. Other signs include bloody or black poop, infrequent bowel movement, bloating, lack of appetite and a sign of discomfort when passing poop. Formula-fed babies are more prone to bouts of constipation. Constipation can be caused by teething or dietary adjustment (if the baby is weaned).
One of the ways of relieving constipation in babies is through exercise. Exercise can stimulate the baby’s bowel. You should also increase your baby’s fluid intake and occasionally massage him.
Immediately contact your doctor, if you notice a poop that has chalky grey or white clay colour in your baby’s diaper. It may be a sign of biliary atresia, a severe liver disorder. Accompanying symptoms of biliary atresia include jaundice, dark urine and weight loss. It occurs due to the blockage of the liver.
A vital way of monitoring your baby’s health is through diaper inspection. Understandably, parents tend to be worried and concerned about the consistency and texture or colour of their babies’ poop. Whatever your baby eats will affect the overall look of his poop. A change in the way your the appearance of your baby’s poop should not frighten you. It is healthy. On very few occasions, it may signify an anomaly. In that case, you should seek your doctor’s counsel.
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