The baby hasn't pooped for three days, what should I do?

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Catherine Le Nevez
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How often should a newborn be unloaded?

If the baby is breastfed

As always, when it comes to children, there is no set rule. The children breastfed they can discharge very often, even after every meal, but they can also discharge more rarely - once a day or less: in the latter case, the amount of stool produced is usually high.

As for the appearance, the feces of the baby who takes mother's milk have a bright yellow color - ocher or goose beak - and one creamy or liquid-like consistency. The smell is not bad and tends to be acidic. Sometimes gods may be present whitish granules made up of casein grains, a milk protein which, if present in excess, is eliminated with the faeces.

If the baby takes formulated milk

If the infant is fed formula milk, his stools will be different: more mellow and compact, with a complexion almost always or light yellow or slightly brownish. The frequency of the evacuations will also be different and that is more rare.

Listen to the podcast on what to do if the newborn does not poop

Is it normal to stay a few days without discharging?

As we have seen, there is great variability in infant evacuations: some poop several times a day, others once every two or three, but even four or five days. In general everything is normal and there is nothing to worry about.

After all, the intestines of newborns are not yet perfectly ready to carry out their task of eliminating faeces in the best possible way; some infants need to "learn to push" to discharge and each has their own times and ways for this learning. 

Read also: Baby's feces: everything you NEED to know

What to do if you haven't pooped for three days?

If the baby is not whiny, does not seem particularly irritated or restless, and when he discharges his discharges are soft or, in the case of bottle feeding, pasty, there is nothing to worry about: you can safely wait a few more times. days to see how things go and eventually intervene by trying to stimulate the rectal area, for example with a micro-enema based on honey. The use of the tube, on the other hand, is controversial because it is more invasive and exposes more to the risk of irritating the delicate mucous membrane of the anus.

In newborns, it is not so much the frequency of bowel movements that determines whether it is constipation or not, but their consistency: in case of constipation the stools are very compact, with the appearance of hard balls, sometimes streaked with blood (due to small lesions to the anus caused by their passage). In this case it is advisable to consult the pediatrician. If the baby is taking formula milk, an indication may be to try to change formula, perhaps preferring products with probiotics or particular formulations of fats. 

Breastfed baby: beware of bowel movements in the first days of life

Breastfed babies often evacuate very frequently, but it can happen that they do it even more infrequently, and as we have said it is absolutely normal. This, however, is especially true after a few weeks of life. In the first few weeks, breastfed babies tend to evacuate every day and if they don't, check that there is no underfeeding problem: it is worthwhile. hear from a lactation consultant, to check how things are going and - if necessary - correct any errors.

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