Baby’s Poop: What’s Normal And What Isn’t
Your baby’s poop can be a good indicator of their overall health status. By simply examining their diaper, you can tell if they are drinking enough milk or if they are dehydrated. You can also tell if a baby is formula-fed or breastfed, based on the colour and the odour of their poop. Your baby’s poop can also indicate the presence of an infection, or other health issues they might have.
Knowing the different types of poop your baby may have will help you determine what is normal and what may require a visit to the doctor’s office. Refer to the guide below to find out all you need to know about your baby’s poop!
Baby’s first stool: Meconium
Your baby’s first stool will be black and tarry-looking. This is normal and should not worry you. After the first couple of days of life you will notice that the black tarry stool will start transitioning into yellowish tones. These tones will vary, depending on if your baby is breastfed or formula-fed.
Babies who are breastfed will generally have poop in the tones of yellow, green or brown. Their stool can be runny, and is usually seedy and pasty. Stools from a breastfed baby also have a slightly sweet odour.
Formula-fed babies will generally poop less frequently than breastfed babies (formula takes longer to digest than breastmilk). The colour you may expect to see will be in the yellow-brown range, while the consistency is usually pasty. Formula-fed babies also have more odorous stool than a breastfed baby.
A lot of parents get concerned when their little ones’ stool starts to have a greenish color to it, but there is no need to worry. Green stool is quite common and does not usually indicate any feeding intolerances or infections. As mentioned previously, breastfed babies might have greenish poop. Babies who take iron supplements may also have green stool.
Runny or hard poop
Diarrhea in babies, presents as poop that is very runny in consistency and is usually well absorbed into the diaper. Diarrhea can indicate presence of an infection or feeding intolerance. If diarrhea persists it can cause dehydration, so make sure you get your little one checked out by their pediatrician.
Hard, pebble-like poop is a sign of constipation. Babies can become constipated once you introduce solids and if they are taking iron supplements. Other times, your little one may be having an intolerance to some by-product in the breastmilk or formula. If the constipation persists, you should contact your pediatrician for further evaluation.
Pale, white or grey poop is usually a sign that your baby is lacking the digestive fluid called bile. Bile is produced by the liver and is stored in the gallbladder. Poop gets its normal color from bile excretion into the small intestine. A lack of bile can indicate a serious underlying health problem, so make sure to get your little one checked out if you notice them having this type of stool.
Red blood in poop
Red blood in your baby’s stool can be an indication of a feeding intolerance or an allergy to milk protein. Other times, if you find bright red blood in diarrhea, it can mean that your baby is having a bacterial infection. In either case, you should always go see a pediatrician if you find blood in your baby’s stool.
Different baby poops may mean different things. Some are transitional and are part of the normal changes that your little one’s digestive system will go through. Others may indicate feeding intolerances or even a serious underlying health issue. Knowing what is normal and what is not, will help you respond appropriately. If ever you are not sure whether your baby’s poop looks healthy or not, consult with your health provider for a second opinion. I hope you enjoyed this week’s blog post!
Have you ever changed your baby’s diaper and were surprised when you saw their poop? Comment below and share your experience with us 🙂