5 month old EXTREMELY constipated! Help?!

Jesse - posted on 09/02/2010 ( 17 moms have responded )

75

3

12

My baby girl is 5months old and since last night had been straining to poop but, nothing it coming. I feel so bad for her and I just dont know what I can do to help relieve her. We introduced some solids over the past week which I can almost guarantee is the culprit for the constipation and I am NOT planning on giving her anymore solids til she's a little older then this. Only reason that we had started a little bit of solids (we tried carrots a couple days ago... Could they make her this constipated?) was because her doctor said, if had wanted to start introducing them, we could. I am just at a complete loss as to what to do for her!

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Sarh - posted on 09/03/2010

2,516

26

176

I wouldn't cut out the solids, you may have to go through this all over again when you restart them. This could be your daughter's body getting used to them and it is very common when introducing new foods. The recommended starter foods such as rice cereal, bananas, squash, and applesauce are constipating foods. Not sure why they recommend these as starter foods w/knowing this! lol.
If your baby is eating rice cereal, try switching to an oat, barley or mixed grain cereal.
Mix the cereal with a little prune juice, or give her fruit juice diluted with cooled, boiled water (or GERBER baby water should be fine). Try 1oz of juice in 4oz of water initially - if this doesn't help, try diluting the juice with 2oz of water. Offer this diluted juice every morning and evening, until the stools soften. Please do so in a sippy cup, this will also be a nice introduction to the sippy cup. Putting anything other that plain milk in a bottle could cause her to not feel a need to switch to the sippy cup later on. Also, it could cause tooth decay and other teeth problems.
Offer other foods that help soften stools - these include pears (a gentle but effective option that is recommend trying first), peaches, apricots, plums and peas.
Massage baby's tummy gently, in a CLOCKWISE (ONLY) direction, starting at her navel and moving outwards. If you rub or massage her back AND/OR tummy in a counter clockwise direction you can cause her to become even more constipated because the bowels go in a clockwise direction so you do not want to push her bowels back up.
Give her a warm bath - this will make her feel relaxed (if she enjoys her baths!) and you can continue the massage technique to "get things moving" and relieve discomfort.
'Cycle' baby's legs - this exerts gentle pressure on her intestines by moving the muscles in her tummy. Simply put her on her back, hold her legs and turn them gently, but quickly, in a cycling motion.
Introduce foods that will not cause constipation such as pureed peaches, prunes, or any green vegetable.
Once baby's stools become more regular again, start adding some of those starter foods again, but in smaller amounts, and less often.
You will need to determine how much of these "loosening" foods your baby needs to keep her regular.
Good luck! I know it's a lot of info at once, but I hope something works for you and your baby girl!!

Sarh - posted on 09/04/2010

2,516

26

176

Oh, ok. Yes, even here in the US things are different pretty much just from each doctor!!! It's crazy, they all have the same "work book", but I think they allow their personal opinions to play in their line of work A LOT!!
And that kind of sucks that you can only see a pediatrician or what not if your over 25. I would NOT like that! Good luck! lol.

Erica - posted on 09/02/2010

54

132

11

You could give your constipated 5 month old a little prune juice and trust me that HELPS a lot!

Sarh - posted on 09/04/2010

2,516

26

176

I've read many places that water is too harsh and even my pediatrician has told me that. I read up on it because I didn't see how it could be either! But, to help w/constipation is fine, I personally would never give my baby plain water just because. Water is just empty calories and if it is not to help w/constipation or dehydration then it is not at all needed.
I never did the whole midwife thing, I prefer pediatricians and OB-GYNs.

Casey - posted on 09/04/2010

35

16

7

well this is what i have been told by my midwife to do when my son was constipated when i had to change from breast milk to formula. its is not recomended sugar water often just if the baby hadnt pooed for a few days, how is water to harsh, i know people that give there babies water all the time...

This conversation has been closed to further comments

17 Comments

View replies by

Shirley G - posted on 09/05/2010

8

43

0

Hello I dont know if this may help you and your constipated 5 month old, but it could be worth trying, get some warm almond oil baby oil as long as your child has no allergys to nuts. and in the evening after you have given your child their bath gently massage their stomach in a clock wise about 6 times not only does this give you both bonding time but relaxes your child. do not use heavy pressure, its just a gentle stokeing movement, Try it and see if in the morning they just have a natural motion without straining.

Casey - posted on 09/04/2010

35

16

7

ohhk fair enough.. well im from Australia too so i guess here people would be told to do things differently... i know that if a baby is getting plenty of breast milk or formula its not needed for water but yea i was told to use cooled boiled water with constripation... i wouldnt do the whole midwife thing either but here if your under 25 they come to your house to check on everything...

Sarh - posted on 09/04/2010

2,516

26

176

A baby never ever needs to be given sugar water!! Sugar will rot a babies teeth(yes,even teeth still in the gums),no health or nutritional value,will reak havoc with the insides,and water is to harsh for their little tummies. (This is why you should ask your pediatrician first).
A baby only ever needs breast milk,or at 2nd best,formula.
No juice until 6 months,then only baby juices or watered down juice.
I've never heard of such a thing.. Must be an old time wives tale.

Casey - posted on 09/04/2010

35

16

7

are you giving plenty of water? intriducung new things like solids or going from breast milk to formula can have effects on thier tummies and can cause this to happen.. if water alone isnt helping you can try putting a teaspoon of brown sugar in the water, its ment to help soften up the poo!

Sarh - posted on 09/03/2010

2,516

26

176

Also, you may want to check w/your doctor if giving her water and juice is "ok"! Shouldn't be a problem though.

Jesse - posted on 09/03/2010

75

3

12

Thank you all so much ladies for the suggestions regarding my constipated 5 month old! She ended up going yesterday afternoon after my MIL suggested infant suppositories. They worked like a charm. I felt so bad for Willow... She was trying to go SO hard and her poor butt was all red by the time she finally managed to poop. She was instantly happier after she went. Thank you for all of the advice ladies!

JohnCourtney - posted on 09/03/2010

43

34

3

if the supp idea bothers u ( like it did me) i held out. I breastfeed my daughter exclusively and when babys are about that age they have growth spurts and breastmilk doesn't have any additives like formula so their bodys absorb it all. Nothing is wrong with that. I read about a lady who had 4 kids and BF each of them and they each once they hit 4-6 months only had a Bowel Movement every 12 days till her milk would start producing more for them during their increased need for it since they were growing more :)

If you aren't BF then you can also give 4oz of gerber or any 100% juice ( prune juice) . It will stimulate them to go. If the baby wants more you are gonna have to water it down cuz they say they shouldn't have more than 4 oz of juice till they are a year old. GOOD LUCK!

JohnCourtney - posted on 09/03/2010

43

34

3

if it hasn't been more than 4 or 5 days shes ok. If so and she seems uncomfirtable, her belly is hard to feel, or shes straining really hard you can get infants suppository or even an adults and just cut it to a small amount and place it in her rectum and it will stimulate her to have a Bowel movement. If nothing happens contact her Ped doc! GOOD LUCK!

Katie - posted on 09/02/2010

4

0

0

My son is one month old. He, at time's, gets constipated. So we sit him in warm bath water, or I'll pump, and give him warmer milk.

Jennifer - posted on 09/02/2010

1,501

37

229

our pediatrician told us that when we started solids, if it made our son constipated that that is a sign that his tummy is not quite mature enough to digest anything other than breast milk, and to wait 2 weeks and try again. some babies do fine with solids earlier than 6 months, and some need more time.

if you press on the right side of his tummy and it feels hard, this is a good sign he is constipated. try gently rubbing his tummy in a clockwise motion using the tips of your fingers. (do not go counter clockwise, this can move the poop back in). also try bringing his knees up to his chest, and bicycling his legs.

some people will suggest adding a bit of karo syrup to his bottle (grandmothers will very often suggest this) but it is not recommended...karo syrup, like honey, carries the risk of botulism which can be fatal. both karo syrup and honey should not be given to any child under 12 months old.

Hayley - posted on 09/02/2010

7

10

1

boiled water will help your constipated 5 month old, if she's really constipated u cud add a touch off orange juice to it too, that will deffinatly help her, i wouldn't stop her food personally, it's just her body getting used to it x

[deleted account]

My six month old strains to poop too. It usually takes him half a day to get out his bowel movement. But he is not constipated. With the solids the poop becomes different & they have to adjust to getting it out. When it does come out if it looks like "rabbit pellots" then that is a positive sign they are constipated. Has she been having little pebble pieces of poop? I would wait & see what it looks like when it comes out to see if your 5 month old is constipated. Now if she is super cranky & irritated like it is bothering her (her stomach will prob. be hard) then you could try some prunes or half prune juice/half water.

Shirley G - posted on 09/05/2010

8

43

0

Hello I dont know if this may help you and your constipated 5 month old, but it could be worth trying, get some warm almond oil baby oil as long as your child has no allergys to nuts. and in the evening after you have given your child their bath gently massage their stomach in a clock wise about 6 times not only does this give you both bonding time but relaxes your child. do not use heavy pressure, its just a gentle stokeing movement, Try it and see if in the morning they just have a natural motion without straining.

Jesse - posted on 09/03/2010

75

3

12

Thank you all so much ladies for the suggestions regarding my constipated 5 month old! She ended up going yesterday afternoon after my MIL suggested infant suppositories. They worked like a charm. I felt so bad for Willow... She was trying to go SO hard and her poor butt was all red by the time she finally managed to poop. She was instantly happier after she went. Thank you for all of the advice ladies!

Hayley - posted on 09/02/2010

7

10

1

boiled water will help your constipated 5 month old, if she's really constipated u cud add a touch off orange juice to it too, that will deffinatly help her, i wouldn't stop her food personally, it's just her body getting used to it x

[deleted account]

My six month old strains to poop too. It usually takes him half a day to get out his bowel movement. But he is not constipated. With the solids the poop becomes different & they have to adjust to getting it out. When it does come out if it looks like "rabbit pellots" then that is a positive sign they are constipated. Has she been having little pebble pieces of poop? I would wait & see what it looks like when it comes out to see if your 5 month old is constipated. Now if she is super cranky & irritated like it is bothering her (her stomach will prob. be hard) then you could try some prunes or half prune juice/half water.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms