Most of the time, it is normal for a baby to go days or even more than a week without a bowel movement. However, sometimes it might be because of constipation and your baby will need a little help if that happens. So, here are how to relieve baby constipation for you.
As with adults, walking and normal activities increase bowel movements. However, your baby might not know how to crawl yet and the lack of bowel movements is one of the main reasons behind constipation. So, moving your baby’s legs is an easy way to help relieve their constipation. You can gently move your baby’s legs while they are lying on their back to mimic the motion of riding a bicycle.
Also, tummy time is an important part of any baby’s development. And, it can also expel gas and stimulate bowel movements. Putting your baby on their tummy either on a clean floor or across your lap for around 20 minutes should do the trick.
A Warm Bath
When your baby is uncomfortable because of constipation symptoms, soaking in a warm bath can be very soothing. Your baby’s pelvic floor muscles might be too tight and difficult to relax because of constipation. So, having a warm bath not only relaxes those stomach muscles but also soothes your baby discomfort relating to constipation. You can add a chamomile tea bag to your baby’s bathwater, the smell is soothing, and it can assist in achieving the desired level of relaxation.
Young infants do not typically need supplemental liquids because they can get water from breast milk or formula. However, babies that are constipated can benefit from a small amount of extra liquid. Pediatricians sometimes recommend adding a small amount of water or fruit juice occasionally to the baby’s diet when they have constipation and over 4 months old. A small amount (2–4 ounces) of pure apple juice can help soften and break up stool.
However, you should not give fruit juice to your baby for the first time without consulting your pediatrician first.
Certain dietary changes can help constipation, but these will vary depending on your baby’s age and diet. With breastfed babies, a mom can eliminate certain foods, such as dairy, from her diet. It may take some trial and error to identify the dietary changes that help. For formula-fed babies, you may want to try a different kind of formula. However, it is best to consult your pediatrician before changing to any new formula. If one change does not make a difference, continuing to try different formulas is unlikely to help.
If your baby is eating solid foods, you might want to introduce foods that are good sources of fiber. Good food choices for babies with constipation include apples, broccoli and oatmeal (it’s also suitable for weaning).
When your baby doesn’t want to exercise, massage would be a good way to relax them and also relieve constipation. There are several ways to massage your baby’s stomach.
- Using your fingertips to make circular motions on your baby’s stomach in a clockwise pattern.
- Holding your baby’s knees and feet together and gently pushing the feet toward their belly.
- Stroking from the rib cage down past the belly button with your edge of a finger.
Once your baby is introduced to solid foods, they may be more likely to experience constipation. Although constipation in children can be uncomfortable, it usually isn’t serious. But, it can be accompanied by health issues like a fever. Normally, mothers can try several baby constipation home remedies first to help alleviate it. However, if their symptoms do not improve after many methods, it is best to speak to your pediatrician for additional strategies. We wish you and your baby the best of health. Let us know about your experience with baby’s constipation in the comments!