Mom & Baby Care

Is Constipation In Newborn Babies Normal?

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By Apollo 24|7, Published on- 30 November 2022

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Newborn babies are hard to read, especially since they don’t speak and only gesture their pain with cries. Babies can get cranky if they haven't gone potty in a while. Precisely why constipation in newborns is pretty common and needless to mention requires immediate paediatric intervention.

It's important to know whether your newborn’s lack of bowel movements is normal or a sign of constipation. And in this blog, we're going to talk a little about your baby's journey of pooping.

Lack of Pooping: Normal or Constipation?

For new parents, it's crucial to know whether the poop is soft or hard to determine if it is constipation.

? Did You Know?
Most infants have two to five bowel movements per day between the ages of 2 and 6 weeks. After each and every meal, some infants have to go to the bathroom. Normal bowel movement frequency typically decreases between the ages of 6 weeks and 3 months. Babies typically have a bowel movement once a day, and some have a bowel movement once a week.

Constipation is common in infants whether they are breastfeeding or on formula. Usually, infants cry a lot at first, but if you see any of these symptoms, it likely signifies your newborn has constipation

  • Pallet-like stools
  • Painful bowel movements
  • Bloating
  • Spitting up
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Excessive fussiness

What Can You Do?

The primary management strategy for persistent constipation is teaching parents how to break the vicious cycle of constipation. Medications can be used to break the "constipation" and "pain" aspects of the vicious cycle. Even though drugs by themselves cannot result in long-lasting therapeutic success, they are crucial to making sure that the stools are soft enough to pass without any pain.

The following prescription methods for osmotic laxatives are widely used by doctors:

a. on an as-needed basis alone

b. a brief course, or

c. underdosing out of concern for inducing diarrhoea. 

Unfortunately, since the vicious cycle is not ended, constipation will eventually return. In order to break the cycle, laxatives must be taken for at least a few weeks or even months, not just a few days, and their length should be proportionate to how severe the constipation is, as the rectum requires time to grow and contract normally again.

? Did You Know?
Stools of breastfed infants tend to be seedy and loose, with a pale mustard colour.

Final Note

Newborn babies very commonly have bowel problems like constipation. It is important to understand the pattern and break the cycle in order to correct constipation at the grass root level. Consult a paediatrician without delay as the condition builds on making it difficult and time-consuming to gain back normalcy.


Consult a Pediatrician


Medically Reviewed by Dr. Dhanunjay Reddy B

Mom & Baby Care

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