Constipation in Babies - Making Things Flow Easier

Your one month old baby grunts and strains as he tries to move his bowels. As a mother, you are typically worried that he may be constipated - you can definitely tell from the look on his face that he is having some major difficulties. So, you call his doctor for some expert opinion. You want to know for certain if it really is constipation and guess what? He told you that you don't have anything to worry about as long as his stool remains soft and moist! No, your baby is not suffering from constipation!

But what about all that grunting? Doesn't it indicate that something is wrong? Doesn't it suggest constipation? According to medical experts, all newborn babies grunt but it does not mean that they are having difficulty in moving their bowels. Basically, they grunt and grumble because their abdominal muscles are not yet as strong as that of an adult's and they need to strain more to push the stool out.

However, when real constipation occurs, you definitely need to have your baby checked by a qualified practitioner. Constipation can be a symptom of a more serious physical or emotional condition and may even indicate an intestinal blockage in younger babies.

To be thoroughly safe, you need to be on the lookout for any significant changes in your baby's stool or bowel movements. And if the baby you are nursing does not move his bowels in 2 days or more, it really is high time for you to consult your doctor about it.

So, what do you need to do once your baby has been diagnosed with constipation? To help your baby move his bowels more easily, try these simple surefire tips:

o Try using suppositories. Glycerin suppositories are safe enough to be used for small children and infants alike. These thin, waxy substances help relieve constipation by stimulating the rectum and by "greasing the walls" to allow for an easier elimination of body wastes. However, be sure to use suppositories only when extremely necessary. Using suppositories on a regular basis may not be good for your baby since once he or she becomes dependent on it, your child will not have a bowel movement without it!

o Enlist the aid of the thermometer. Using a rectal thermometer approved for child use can help your child if he or she is being troubled by constipation. How do you use it? Simply apply some petroleum jelly onto the rectal thermometer and insert it into the baby's rectum. Be careful not to insert it more than 2 ½ inches deep. Don't worry if you see traces of feces in the thermometer as you take it out. It just means that the treatment has been proven effective once again!

o Sweet does it! So, you really need an effective treatment for your baby's constipation, don't you? Well, try this! Add a teaspoon of Karo syrup in about 6 to 8 ounces of your baby's formula and you can say goodbye to your baby's constipation for good! The syrup draws enough water as it travels to your child's digestive tracts thereby keeping the stools soft.

No one deserves to suffer from constipation - especially not the babies and younger children! Just follow these tips and you can be sure to keep constipation in babies and children at bay.

Michael Russell
Your Independent guide to Constipation

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