By Dr. Ritu Krishnatreye, BHMS
Infant constipation remedy
Constipation is fairly common in infants.
An infant is considered constipated when it strains during defecation or passes less than one stool a week. These stools are harder and firmer then normal and are difficult to pass.
Constipation is rarely seen in breastfed babies, since breast milk is well suited to human babies and easy for them to digest.
Breast milk contains a perfect balance of proteins and fats that makes it easily absorbable. Moreover, breast milk also contains a hormone called motilin that increases bowel movements.
Constipation is more commonly observed in infants on cow’s milk. Bottle fed babies have fewer bowel movements than breastfed babies.
If you are giving pasteurized cow’s milk to your baby, the enzymes present in the milk to help digest it have been killed during pasteurization.
If at all possible, switch to unpastuerized cow’s milk. The enzymes present in the milk will help your baby to more easily digest the milk proteins, which presents a fantastic constipation remedy.
Formula milk is difficult for babies to digest, and often causes constipation in infants.
Formula milk comes in different varieties and combinations. Try switching between a different formula to find one that best suits your baby.
Constipation in infants is also observed once a baby starts the transition to solid foods.
To help your baby to avoid constipation, look for foods that contain some fiber. In case the constipation still persists, try giving your baby a little bit of an ionic sea mineral supplement as a remedy.
Try starting with one drop of minerals a day for every 4 pounds your baby weighs. You can add the minerals to baby’s milk or food. Just be sure it is diluted enough to cover the bitter taste of the magnesium and potassium in the minerals.
Ionic sea minerals is a good source of magnesium. This helps to soften stool, and also helps in building strong teeth and strong bones.
The sea minerals also contain numerous beneficial trace minerals.
Constipation in infants can usually be managed by home remedies. These remedies are safe and natural, tried and tested by moms.
Include high fiber foods in your baby’s diet. This may include giving your baby barley cereal instead of rice cereal. Other high fiber foods include:
These can be easily pulverized by a blender to turn them into mush.
Prune juice is an age old remedy for treating constipation in adults and babies alike.
It contains a good amount of fiber, plus other substances that increase bowel activity. Start with a two ounce serving of prune juice.
Apple and pear juice also contain soluble fiber that is helpful in treating constipation.
If your child is 4 to 8 months old, give a total of two to four ounces of 100 percent fruit juice every day.
Dark corn syrup is another home remedy to help constipated babies.
The syrup contains sugar proteins that help in retaining water in the colon. This keeps the bowels soft and moist, and easy to pass.
Use a low dose (1.25 ml) of corn syrup and add it to four ounces of formula, milk or some solid food. Talk to your child’s pediatrician if you are giving corn syrup to your baby.
As mentioned above, low sodium sea minerals are another effective home remedy for treating infant constipation. It contains magnesium that draws extra water into the colon, which helps to keep stool moist and soft.
The suggested daily dosage is one drop of Ionic Sea Minerals to four ounces of milk or solid food.
If constipation still persists, it is probably a good idea to visit your pediatrician, as there may be an underlying medical condition.
Constipation in infants can be troublesome for parents as well as babies. I believe the above mentioned remedies may be just what your baby needs to overcome the problem.