Constipation is a common condition in infants that can lead to other health problems if not treated. If your baby seems uncomfortable, as evidenced by straining or hard pellets coming out of their diaper, then it’s time for them to get relief from constipation with some help from you! It’s important for babies and young children who are suffering chronic cases of constipation be seen by doctors especially if you find blood in your baby’s stool, so they don’t develop more serious conditions.
This gallery is for informational purposes only – always call your pediatrician with any medical questions. That said, check out these 10 tips that moms have used for eons to treat baby constipation quickly and getting their little one’s bowels running smoothly again!
1. Increase Your Baby’s Water Consumption
Bottle or breastfed, your baby needs water. Constipation is a problem for many of us adults and it can be same for babies too! For those bottle fed babes who are feeling backed up try giving them an additional 2-4 ounces (1/4 – 1/2 cup) after each feeding to help bowels flush properly.
2. Introduce Fruit Juice
A glass of prune juice can help get things moving in your toddler’s system. It also works wonders for relieving minor constipation and is even sweeter than apple or pear juices, so it might be a perfect first drink when you’re introducing drinks to her diet. However, if there are any signs that she doesn’t like the taste (or don’t want gas), try sparingly starting with only 2 ounces after feeding time until she gets used to drinking full-strength fruit juice!
3. High-Fiber Foods
Bananas, rice cereal, carrots and cheese are a mainstay of most infant diets. They also tend to have a binding effect on stool with those who can’t say no to the delightfully chewy texture loved by babies as they figure out what different foods taste like for the first time. Better choices include apricots, pears or prunes that will help avoid constipation in your baby even when their diet is limited due to other health conditions such as celiac disease which arises from eating wheat-containing products
4. Give Your Baby “Bicycle Legs”
Sometimes it is hard to get babies’ bowels moving, but there are a few tricks you can try. One trick is that you could place your baby on his back in front of you and then lift up his legs while simultaneously making circular motions with them similar to the motion one would do if they were peddling their bicycle. The movement should help release some pressure from inside the abdomen and will likely be enough for getting things going again!
5. Switch to a Different Brand of Formula
If your baby suffers from constipation, a switch in formula could ease their discomfort. It’s important to find the one that is right for your child as every individual reacts differently to each type of formulation. One low-lactose variety might be more tolerable than others and can provide relief if it doesn’t bother them at all!
6. Check Your Baby’s Temperature
With rectal stimulation, you can help your baby’s bowels to move. Use Vaseline and a lubricated tip of the thermometer for this task. Gently wiggle JUST the tip in before removing it; soon enough they will have bowel movement as well!
7. Massage Baby’s Tummy
The circular motion of the hands can soothe babies, and it also helps with digestion. When your baby is on her back in a comfortable position like sitting up or lying down while you’re holding them against your chest, place one hand over their belly button to massage gently from there outwards in ever bigger circles as they need more pressure for different parts of their tummy region. Watch what movements she does that tells you if she needs less or more stimulation; generally speaking though, light but firm rubbing motions are enough because this type of touch both stimulates blood flow throughout all regions within the stomach lining (this will help mom digest food too!) and relaxes tight muscles around those areas which may be causing gas buildup
8. Give Baby a Warm Bath
A warm bath is a great way to help your baby relax. The gentle water can also soothe their sensitive skin and muscles while letting go of what they’ve been holding in! After that, try the tummy massage technique to help relieve your baby of gas – which may make it easier for them to poop again.
9. Use a Glycerin Suppository
Consult with your doctor for the best dose and time to use a suppository. There are many factors that can affect how much of an effect it will have in relieving constipation, such as age, size or length of illness. Glycerin suppositories typically work within 15-30 minutes but other types may take longer so consult a pharmacist if you need more information about different products available before picking one out!
10. What Not to Do
Babies are so small that they can quickly become dangerously dehydrated, and it is recommended to never use mineral oil, enemas or stimulant laxatives.
Talk to your medical professional
Every baby is a unique little butterfly, and their reactions to various constipation relief techniques are different than other babies. Some parents might start by trying out some of the more common strategies like prune juice or sugar-free popsicles, but if those don’t work they should contact a doctor immediately since chronic constipation can be dangerous for young children (and even adults). The advice from medical professionals may alleviate the problem quickly with less experimentation on parts of parents’ time!