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The characteristics of the baby's stool may vary according to some situations, such as changes in milk, intestinal infections or stomach changes, which can promote changes in the color, consistency and quantity of stools.
Changes in the baby's stool may be accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, abdominal pain, crying, vomiting and irritability, and it is important to be aware of these signs and symptoms.
Therefore, it is important to consult the pediatrician whenever there are sudden changes in the stool, especially when accompanied by other symptoms such as decreased appetite, vomiting or irritability, so that the baby can be evaluated and start the appropriate treatment.
1. Stool color
Changes in baby's stool color are related to the speed at which food passes through the intestine, the type of diet or he alth problems, as shown below:
Yellow color is normal in baby poop, especially those who are fed only breast milk. When fed formula milk, stools are dark yellow, more brown in color. Thus, yellow poop should only be a cause for concern when in the form of diarrhea.
What to do: Since more yellow stools are considered normal in most situations, no treatment is necessary. However, if the consistency changes and the stool becomes more liquid and/or is accompanied by fever or irritability, it is recommended to consult the pediatrician, as it may be indicative of an infection that requires specific treatment.
The green color appears in the baby's feces mainly in the first week of life or when he is exclusively breastfed, then it has a light green color. However, this color can also be due to the presence of infection, change of milk, intolerance to some food or medication use. See more at: What can be baby's green poop.
Also, if the poop is shiny green and has a foamy texture, it may be a sign that the baby is only feeding with the beginning of the breast feed, which is composed especially of water.
What to do: If they appear after the second week of life or if the green tone gets stronger, you should look for the pediatrician to identify the cause of the problem. If the stools are green and foamy, the baby should be allowed to dry the entire breast before changing breasts, because only then will he be able to ingest the milk fat and calories necessary for he althy growth.
They can indicate problems in the passage of bile to the intestine and, if it occurs in the first 2 weeks of life and is associated with jaundice, it is important that the pediatrician is consulted as soon as possible so that an ultrasound can be performed.
What to do: If this color persists for more than 2 or 3 days, consult a pediatrician, as the baby may have a liver disease that has to be de alt with quickly.
May occur due to increased intake of foods such as beets, beans or blackberries. However, red stools can also be a sign of blood in the intestinal tract, which can be caused by problems such as intestinal infection, constipation, hemorrhoids or food allergy, and it is necessary to look for the pediatrician soon. See other causes here.
What to do: If the red color is not due to an increased intake of dark foods, you should seek medical attention immediately to identify the presence and cause of bleeding intestinal.
It can be a sign of blood due to injuries in the intestinal tract or due to the presence of sores on the mother's breasts, which can end up causing the baby to ingest blood.
In addition, the dark brown color can also be a sign that the baby is taking food supplements such as iron, which end up darkening the stool.
What to do: In case of using supplements, the change in color is normal and one should only observe if the stool improves after the medication is finished. However, the dark color does not present an apparent cause, it is important to look for the pediatrician soon to try to identify the problem.
Thus, the important thing is to remember to be aware of changes in the baby's feces and in their intestinal transit rhythm, as sudden changes or accompanied by other symptoms, such as fever, pain, swelling and irritation, may indicate the presence of diseases.
2. Amount of feces
The amount of baby's stool varies according to the type of food and age, and it is common to have bowel movements after each meal or up to 2 times a week.
In general, exclusively breastfed newborns usually poop after each feeding, but this frequency decreases after about 3 to 6 weeks, due to the maturation of the mother's milk.
However, one should be alert and seek medical attention if the amount of stool suddenly decreases, without any apparent reason or changes in the child's diet, as it may be an indication of a problem.
3. Stool consistency
The normal consistency of baby's stool is pasty, but it is common for children fed with formula milk to have stools that are more consistent or with small lumps, as formula milk is more difficult to digest than breast milk.
However, sudden changes in consistency can indicate he alth problems such as:
Stools are smaller in quantity and are in the form of small hard balls, and there may also be pain, tightening of the belly and cracks in the anus, due to difficulty in defecating.Constipation may indicate dehydration, change in milk tolerance or increased consumption of foods that are difficult to digest, such as seeds, beans and corn.
What to do: Give the baby more water and see if the consistency improves. In addition, if the child is already eating solid foods, try to offer more cooked fruits and vegetables to increase the amount of fiber in the diet. However, if constipation persists for more than 3 days, a pediatrician should be consulted. See other signs at: Signs of dehydration in children.
It is characterized by the occurrence of at least 3 stools that are more liquid than normal, and may indicate problems such as a virus infection or allergy to milk or to some food.
What to do: Give your baby plenty of water to prevent dehydration and give baby foods that are light for their age. It is also important to see a doctor to assess the cause of diarrhea, especially if fever or vomiting is also present or if the baby is less than 3 months old. See more at: How to treat baby diarrhea.