Looking for natural remedies to cure baby constipation? You have come to the right place.
Constipation in children is a common problem and is most frequently the result of dietary changes as your child grows. In fact, it accounts for 3-5% of all visits to pediatric outpatient clinics and over 30% of all visits to pediatric gastroenterologists.
Alarming right? But that doesn’t mean you’ve to rush to a doctor every time your child shows signs of constipation.
There are many natural home remedies you can use that have been tested and proven to work great at relieving infant constipation. In this post, we’re going to introduce you to the 7 safe, and natural ways to relieve baby constipation.
But first, a primer on infant constipation.
Infant Constipation: Definition and Causes
Constipation is a condition in which there is difficulty in emptying bowels, usually characterized by hardened feces. If your newborn is having difficulty pooping, she could be constipated.
An infant on breast milk only is unlikely to be constipated because the stool remains soft.
But the moment the mother switches to formula and solid foods, chances of having a constipated baby increases. That’s because the nutrients in the formulas are slightly different from what the baby was getting from breast milk.
If an infant does not respond well to a new formula, she may experience troubled digestion that could eventually lead to constipation.
But a change in formula is not the only reason you could be dealing with a constipated baby.
Some ailments such as gastrointestinal infection can result in hardened stool with fresh or clotted blood. Also, when babies are sick, they may not eat or drink properly and this may cause their digestive system to go off track. This can also lead to constipation.
Dehydration is another major culprit behind infant constipation. Poor intake of fluids can affect their ability to pass stool.
Last but not the least, what you feed your baby can also take the blame for constipation. For instance, lack of fiber or low fiber content in an infant’s solid food diet can cause the stool to harden.
In most cases, constipation in babies can be relieved by natural methods.
However, if you notice blood in the stool, rush her to a doctor. Also, if the infant has chronic constipation, it could be a symptom of fecal impaction, which is a serious condition that may require specialized treatment.
8 Natural Ways to Relieve Baby Constipation
Here are the 8 proven natural home remedies for baby constipation relief.
As mentioned earlier, dehydration is one of the major causes of constipation. As such, giving your baby adequate fluids can help to reduce incidences of constipation.
If your baby is showing signs of constipation, giving her additional 2-3 ounces of water after each feeding can help the bowels to flush properly.
Adequate amounts of liquids in your baby’s body can help to smoothen bowel movements.
Exercising is one of the most effective baby constipation remedies.
When done right, exercising can be all you need to facilitate smooth bowel movements.
If your baby is young, lay her on her back and gently move her legs as if she is paddling a bicycle. Doing so will not only be fun for your child but will also help to loosen the intestines.
If your baby is in the crawling stage, encouraging her to move around the house can do the trick. Also, try to make her squit on your forearm like a bunny. This can help to exert pressure on the baby’s rectum and help her to defecate.
3. Prune Juice
Prunes are natural laxatives. As such, prune juice is very effective at relieving infant constipation. It’s the best fruit juice you can offer her to smoothen bowel movements.
Prunes are also rich in fiber, which helps to prevent hemorrhoids that result from constipation in infants.
While prune juice may not contain the same amount of beneficial fiber as the whole fruit, it does contain enough fiber to relieve infant constipation.
4. Tummy Massage
A soft massage on the baby’s tummy can help to induce bowel movements.
Gently massage her tummy in a clockwise direction while slowly moving away from the center of the belly. Doing so triggers the bowels to move to the rectal region.
Massage the navel region as well, in a circular motion. This helps to extirpate the tension out of the baby’s tummy.
5. High-Fiber Foods
As mentioned earlier, a diet rich in fiber helps to prevent baby constipation. Foods low in fiber can cause the stool to harden.
Therefore, as a parent, it’s important to get off the BRAT diet. This includes rice, bananas, toast, and applesauce. Often parents will give these foods to their babies to help calm an upset tummy.
However, these foods are low in fiber and can cause the stool to harden.
It is recommended to give your baby high-fiber foods to help avoid constipation. Foods like apricots, plums, prunes, peaches, and pears are good for your child and can help to prevent as well as alleviate constipation.
6. Lubrication to Anus
Applying a water-based lubricant to your’s baby’s anus can help to ease the pain. Lubricating the excretory passage can also help to relieve the discomfort that results from constipation.
Alternatively, you can rub the area around the infant’s anus gently when changing the diaper. While this may not cure constipation, it will encourage her to poop.
7. A Warm Bath
A warm bath can help to soothe and relax the tensed muscles. Warm water also relaxes the stomach muscles which helps to relieve constipation.
When bathing your baby in warm water, add a few spoons of baking soda. It helps to open up the rectal muscles which in turn facilitates bowel movements.
The risk of baby constipation can be reduced significantly by giving your child a proper diet. The gentle ingredients like prune juice, organic dandelion, and fennel seeds can ease the symptoms associated with constipation.
Keeping your baby hydrated at all times also helps to minimize the incidences of constipation.
Also, make the habit of diluting juices with water before giving them to your child. Undiluted juices may cause diarrhea, bloating, or gas.
Check out our blog for more information about the best formula for your baby and learn more about important tips and guides to keep your baby strong and healthy.