41 answers

Constipated Two Month Old :(

I think that my two month old son is constipated (if it's not one thing it's another, isn't it?). He is EXTREMEMLY irritable which is very unlikely for him and has not made a bowel movement in about 24 hrs. His last one was very firm and almost like clay. My question is, what can I do for him? I can't give him juice because he is too young. Would water help? He is currently on Enfamil GentleEase formula...would a bottle of soy help any? He is just misserable! He has been crying off and on since two this morning and just can't seem to get comfortable. He is passing gas but nothing else. Thanks!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, thank you everyone for all of the responses! I ended up diluting his formula just a bit and he is fine now. The enfamil gentleease just keeps causing problems, so his new pediatrician switched him to the lactose free genle ease. We'll see. However, most of the irritablity ended up being from an ear infection (isn't having a newborn in the winter just wonderful). I felt horrible!!! He is doing fine now, and thank you again!!

Featured Answers

My daughter was the same way, water will help, but I had to give her a little prune juice about 2 onces then add 2onces of water to make it a 4 once bottle, she still has some problems with that and she is almost 2 years old. Good luck!!
M.

Hi K.
Let me give you a little advice. I'm a mother of 5 they are now 22,21,20,18,15. The Doctors don't know everything when it comes to kids. Get some apple jucie put 1/2 juice and1/2 water. That should loosen him up. I hope this helps. If you have any more questions just drop me a line. If you need my e-mail just let me know.
G. W.

I have not had this problem, but I have heard from other Moms that just a bit of dark Karo syrup in his bottle usually helps if that problem continues.

More Answers

I try to lay my baby on his back and move his legs like a bicycle and pump them up an down. I will also press on his butt cheeks while he's on his back (right by his butt hole..sorry, I know that sounds kind of gross). Or, stick a rectal thermometer in like you're going to take his temperature. I know water helps as well, but I don't know about giving it to a 2 mo old, I'm sure it would be fine. If none of those work, call your doctor about a glycerin suppository or try switching formulas.

i would guess it's certainly constipation that's making him irritable.

This I just posted to another mom about her 2y.o. who's got constipation: "if what your son has is constipation or irregularity, i suggest probiotic supplements. you can't find any articles/studies saying there are any drawbacks to these. you can get them at Fruitful Yield (next to Kohls near Fox Valley Mall) in the refrigerator (must be kept cool to keep their potency). They have great ones that are chewable in strawberry or blueberry flavors. my son loves them. give one a day, every day. my son was always an intermittent pooper. he's regular now that I'm giving him these. Plus, I started taking them and am more regular than I have ever been in my life (only used to go every 2-3 days). Good luck!"

Also, I highly recommend homeopathic medicines. There's a combination remedy by Hylands for Gas. You can give this to a little baby. Most pediatricians don't know about homeopathic meds, but they can't hurt a baby. I've been giving my 7.5mo DD that GAS remedy for months now, whenever she's gassy or hasn't pooped (in addition to probiotics). Also, try Hylands Colic remedy for babies. it helps w/ digestive tract issues. You can usually find that one in the health food section at Dominicks or Jewel, but can certainly find it at Fruitful Yield or Whole Foods. Homeopathic remedies can't hurt, but they might help, and often you see wonderful results. I do with my children, usually w/in minutes of just one dose.

Don't give him soy formula, it is constipating.

Hi, K.. My DD went through when she was about the same age. Her doctor discouraged me from using the Karo syrup.

I talked to my local Walgreens pharmasist and he told me to give her an infant suppository.

The first one I gave her, she pushed out a steel bar in about 1/2 a second. It took about a day-in-a-half to resolve the constipation but it worked like a dream.

Go to your local pharmacy and ask you pharmacist about an infant suppository. It should really help your little one.

My pediatrician had recommended regular prune juice... about an ounce or so should do the trick. Hope your little one gets some relief soon!

Here's something to try that I use on my daughter. Bare your baby's belly, take 2 of your fingers (the first 2) and place them just below the left side of his ribcage. Push in about half and inch and drag your finger straight down (maintaining pressure) to his hip. Then do the same thing but start under the right side of his ribcage and going straight across to your orignial starting point and down to his left hip again (like a sideways "L"). Then start at his right hip and go up to his ribcage, across to the otherside and down to the left hip (like an upside down "U") We call it the "I Love You stroke and it works. What is does is move the contents of the large intestine (colon) in the proper direction. Repeat this 4 or 5 times in a row. Another thing I do is to lay my daughter down in front of my and rub her stomach by just laying my hand under her ribs (cross ways) and pulling them straight down to her hips alternating hands like paddling. This has worked with her and you don't have to worry about giving your son water or juice or anything then. Milk could be making him constipated! Try it. I hope it works for you like it does for me. Good luck!

I have not had this problem, but I have heard from other Moms that just a bit of dark Karo syrup in his bottle usually helps if that problem continues.

My daughter was the same way, water will help, but I had to give her a little prune juice about 2 onces then add 2onces of water to make it a 4 once bottle, she still has some problems with that and she is almost 2 years old. Good luck!!
M.

OMG! Whatever you do, DON'T give him SOY. That is the worst thing ever. My daughter was on that for a week and it was awful. The bm's got real runny and they smelled so bad it was enough to clear a room. They had to take the kids outside at daycare for a walk after she pooped. She had to be put on Nutramigen after that. You should ask your ped. about that kind. It's Enfamil and it works wonderful. You need an rx for it though if you have WIC.

I second Gripe Water....it works wonders. Great for tummy problems and teething. I used it for my daughter who is now 4 and am using it for my 6 month since he was a month old. You can buy it at Walgreens.

Good luck

Both of my children had the same problem. Doctor reccommended trying 1 oz water with 1 oz juice. When that didn't work, she reccommended Miralax. Miralax used to be prescription only, but it's over the counter now. It takes awhile to get the dose right. I would start with the juice/water. If that doesn't work, then try adding 1 tsp of Miralax to the juice/water. You'll want to wait several days because it can have a delayed effect and if you give them too much, it's really messy. My doctor says that Miralax is not addictive and completely safe. She says it's like adjusting their diet.

Yes, I would give him water. Maybe even watered down apple juice might help. Also let your son's doctor know what is going on. My daughter (now 19years old) was very constipated as a baby and ended up with a hemroid at 4 months old. My doctor just thought I was an over worried mom and didn't take me seriously.

Fortunately you won't need a prescription for Nutramigen - you can buy it at Target, BRUs, etc.

Try Gripe Water. It's a great remedy we used for our son for all kinds of stomach issues. Not sure if Walgreens has it yet, but an herbalist or vitamin shop should carry it. I think there are now a couple brands on the market as it seems to be becoming more popular here in the States (it's been used for ages in Europe). If you can't find it locally, order it online at smallflower.com (or you can call them; they're a great resource)

Is there Iron in the formula? If so that is what is constipating, have you tried mylycon drops for colic? also go to the drug store and get some glycerin suppositories, for babies but you don't have to use a whole one, just enough to stimulate him to go, maybe he just has a real hard piece in there and it is having a hard time coming out. Have you felt his belly? hard or soft? I remember my daughter going 7 days without a BM, nursing all the time finally she went and it looked like a snake coming out:( but I'm sure she felt better. Good Luck

When my boy/girl twins were 2 months old , we were told by the doctor to buy glycerine suppositories. They are about an inch long so cut them in half or thirds. You have to slip it into the baby's butt and sometimes it won't stay in so you can hold it in for a few seconds.Keep a diper under him while you do this . Also, put his diper on right away after inserting. My twins usually went to the bathroom about 5-45 minutes later. It really works:) For the first two months the twins were constipated on and off. We had tried about four different formulas without success .We finally switched to Good Start, the purple one. It works!
After reading all the other advice just now , I would like you to know we tried the prune juice, nuetramigen formula, soy,etc. None of those worked for us. The good start not only passes through their system faster ,but is best for colicky babies (my Daughter was ).

L. K SAHM

As gross and aweful as it sounds lub up a thermometer and insert (yeah there) it sometimes manually forces the "pooty" out. It is a natural instict.
S. B.
EMT

Probiotics are probably what is needed. Try whole Foods or Vitamin shoppe for some safe for babies.

FYI-My 3 week old was on soy for the first 2 weeks of his life. I experienced similar irritability as you are with your 2 month old. Mine has a bowel movement about every 2 days. I spoke with my doctor about this and he said that the soy formula tends to "bind" babies up and put him on Similac Sensitive. So...not sure if it is true for all...but my doctor thought the soy was the problem.

just use a lubricated themometer into the rectum and sometimes that gets things going. otherwise use 1 oz a prune juice in am and pm.

Hi K.
Let me give you a little advice. I'm a mother of 5 they are now 22,21,20,18,15. The Doctors don't know everything when it comes to kids. Get some apple jucie put 1/2 juice and1/2 water. That should loosen him up. I hope this helps. If you have any more questions just drop me a line. If you need my e-mail just let me know.
G. W.

I have 2 suggestions for you and I have had great luck with both my children using them. Believe it or not, just taking a rectal temperature can get things moving down there. Just be sure to insert only the tip. I know it sounds a little gross, but it works. Second, if your baby takes a bottle, try a little Karo Syrup. Not much at that age I'd imagine a teaspoon or so should do the trick depending on how much your baby eats, maybe a tablespoon. Just add it to the bottle, a smaller amount than usual so you can be sure the Karo was digested. Then just sit back and wait for the show in about 4 to 6 hours. This was recommended by my pediatrican for both my kids. Don't worry, it doesn't cause major movements, just helps get things going.

Hey K.,

You're right. He is REALLY little to be giving him much. What I'd do is make sure he is getting plenty of fluids (formula). The more hydrated he stays the better.

What I might recommend works quite well for my collicky 3 month old. I use a palmful of almond oil and a drop or two of lavender oil and massage his belly (the lavender is very soothing). When you rub, do it in a clockwise motion (That is you are starring down looking at him and its YOUR clockwise, not his). After that, lay him down and push his knees into his chest, then stretch them out. Repeat this. You can also take his legs and put them together, push them against his belly and rub in a clockwise motion as well. Give it a wing. I've had a lot of success moving air. My little boy has not been constipated. But gas hurts just the same, and your moving the same pipes. :) I also saw where someone recommended Gripe Water. I love the stuff personally!! Use it ALL the time!

You could also try a little rectal stimulation. Not the most exciting thing to do in your day... I know. But, if you check his temperature rectally, sometimes that will trigger peristalsis (contraction of the smooth muscle in the bowel). Might work.

Last ditch effort, if it has been more than say 3 days and he's absolutely miserable, obviously consult your doctor. But they make glycerin suppositories for children. Check with your pharmacist. It's not the most pleasant thing, but it typically induces a bowel movement fairly quickly. Best of luck to you!!
Jaime

My dr told me it was normal...my daughter would go 4-5 days with out a bowel movement. She also said the only exception to the no juice rule was prune juice. And she told me to do that after 6 days. I would check to see what your dr says first though since different drs = different philosophies.

Hi K.,
I had the same problem with my son, at about the same age (2 months). I could see him straining to try and have a BM, then crying because it hurt. I called my pediatrician and she told me to give him prune juice mixed with water. I suggest 2 parts water to 1 part prune juice. It worked great.
Good luck!
C. J

Just a suggestion but have you tried prune juice and water.
Also what has his doctor said is best for constipation.

My son is 6 months old and at about the same age we had an issue. The Pediatrician suggested using vaseline around the opening of his rectum and to use a Q-tip. I actually did this ONE time and within 30 minutes there was a stool. I mixed white grape juice 50/50 with water and warmed it up and gave that to him (2 oz). It worked the next day. When we introduced baby food we had the same problem and once he has some of the 50/50 juice we are OK. Good Luck and I hope this helps.

When our little guy was an infant and constipated we gave him a combo of prune juice and water. I believe the mix was 1 oz prune with 3 oz water and then we gave 1oz of that mixture. I would give your doc a call to double check if its okay to give anything and the exact formula. Good luck.

I went through this with all 3 of my boys. Each one of them had colic though. The colic is where all they do is cry because they are full of gas. There is a possibility that your child may have colic. I would suggest starting with a phone call to his or her pediatrician. The doctor may recommend switching to a soy based formula instead. The regular formula was too much for my kids tummies so when I switched them they did a lot better and they weren't as gassy and when they pooped it wasn't as hard. Let me know what happens. D.

Call your doctor....

K.-I have been study homopathic options for 5 years and herbology. You can give him organic chaomile (sp?) tea made with pure distilled water. It is perfectly safe. infants should never have formula period. Are you nursing at all?? Their little digestive systems can not process dairy and ALL of your store bought formulas are dairy based. You can contact me direct at ____@____.com. check out a really great website www.mercola.com.

T.

Hi,
I'm a mother of 4 adult kids and grandmother of 3. Have you checked with your Dr. by phone ? Sometimes a mixture of water and karo syrup is suggested. Below is a website where I found the following exerpt:

http://www.drgreene.org/body.cfm?id=21&action=detail&...

"Stool that is hard (firmer than peanut butter) or foul smelling (you'll know) in a child who has not yet had solid foods may represent something as simple as needing more to drink (especially during hot weather), but it may also be the sign of a disease. Contact your pediatrician to discuss the situation. If the baby is otherwise healthy, one teaspoon of light *Karo syrup in 4 ounces of water will often get things back on track. Also, contact your pediatrician if the baby is less than a month old and hasn't gone for 4 days. "
"Stool that is hard (firmer than peanut butter) or foul smelling (you'll know) in a child who has not yet had solid foods may represent something as simple as needing more to drink (especially during hot weather), but it may also be the sign of a disease. Contact your pediatrician to discuss the situation. If the baby is otherwise healthy, one teaspoon of light *Karo syrup in 4 ounces of water will often get things back on track. Also, contact your pediatrician if the baby is less than a month old and hasn't gone for 4 days. "

Hope it is helpful

A warm bath and a stomach massage. Make sure the warm water comes up to his belly button. Let him play ans soak for a little bit, then lay him on his back on a towel and massage his belly, you can even try bicycling his legs. You basically want to gently squish his intestines to get whatever it blocking him up moving again.

This worked for me, I hope it works for you.

I had the same problem with my son and my sister in law recommened Mylicon and water. Alternating bottles. One water one formula. It worked for my son.

Hi K.,

I know this can be frustrating I went through this with 2 of my kids. First try taking his temp rectally. It will force him to push and they usually poop during it. Another thing you can do is move his legs like he's riding a bike. That helps alot. If neither of those work.....get some Karo syrup the clear not the dark and put a tablespoon into his bottle. He'll be pooping in no time!! Good luck!!

Kim

Talk to your doctor about giving him a little bit of prune juice watered down. This helped my son when he was two. Be very careful about not letting the constipation go for too long. I know that I let it go for too long, my son is currently 9 and has to take daily doses of Miralax for the next year. Because he was colicky and constipated from the time he was born until age 2 1/2, his intestine grew and now his bowel movements are quite large. Doctors say that this isn't normal, so we have to shrink his intestine down to a normal size. He's been on Miralax for about a year and it's working, but it's quite costly. I would try the prune juice watered down - but ask your doctor first if this is ok.

C. K
____@____.com

Hi K.,

Funny that you are asking this because we just went thru this last week with out 5 month old. Same situation too, on Enfamil Gentleease and was constipated and was miserable and irratable. Called the doctor and he suggested adding jsut a little bit of Karo Syrup (the light kind) to his bottles. Do three bottles in a row and then wait. he said that if it didn't help after three bottles then to do two more. Well after the second bottle we were back in business and he was back to our sweet happy baby. Doc said if we went five bottles and it didn't help that he wanted to see him. Good Luck!!!

Hi K.,
Its the worse when infants are not doig so well. I have a 10 month old son myself and three older girls ranging in age (the oldest is 9). I would not give the baby water alone. That will do more damage. He may get a diaper rash with a lot of water which will lead to more discomfort and we do not want that.

Please add a little more water to his formula. For example. If you give him 6oz of formula add about 1 oz of water to it and mix well. The constipation will ease and his little tummy will not be irritated by all of the water.

I had my son at Evanston Northwestern Hospital and they send you home with a book that explains common things to occur to infant. It also reccomends for constipation to "add a small amount of water to the diet... and decrease constipating foods, such as rice bana, or cereal" (page 498 Caring for Your Baby and Child)

I hope this helps.

A bottle of Water with Karo syrup. He is old enough for it. He is also old enough for watered down juice bottles...Water always helps constipation!! Karo is a natural laxative for babies. Next time do not wait until this point, when he has the clay like stool, give him a Karo bottle:) He will love the sweetened water! Just do not give them to him all the time, it is not good for them.

I have three children 18 (in the navy) 16 ( social butterfly) and 6 ( our little wild man ) I used Karo bottles on all three of them!!

I put 3-4 tsp in an 8 oz bottle.

Good Luck!!

DO NOT give him Karo syrup. It's in the same category as honey. It's a HUGE no no for kids under 1. There's something in it that can cause botulism in kids. You could try a gently tummy massage. Just make sure to always rub the belly clockwise. That's the direction the intestines go in. If you rub counterclockwise you can make the problem worse. You can also use the flat of your palm and rub downward from the sternum to the pubic area. I took some wonderful massage classes when my dd was an infant. It's totally safe to do on children of any age.

Have you tried doing tummy massaging to help his digestive system flow? Start at the right hip and work your way up his right shoulder across to his left shoulder and back down to his left hip. This follows the flow of the digestive system. When my daughter (now 6months) was trying to go, I would give her a tummy massage and then push her knees into her chest, now I do the massage every night before bedtime as part of her wind-down routine. If you are B/F you may want to avoid dairy, if I have to use formula I use Nurtragimen, the powder is broken down than most and is easier to digest. I would not do soy formula, too much bad info out there on them. Good luck.

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