24 answers

Messy Diapers

I hate even asking this question but here it goes, sorry it's gross. My 4mo old breastfed baby has loose stools. Dr. has no concern about this. I have started him on cereal once a day and that has not changed them much at all. My problem is that 9 out of 10 times when he has a b.m. it goes right out the back top of his diapers, all over him, his clothes, and the sheet. I believe he is in the right size, size 2 pampers swaddlers. I don't really want to switch brands, he has sensitive skin, but am sick of doing so much laundry every other day. Any suggestions would be helpful. I probably will have to just wait for it to change but wish there was some other solution!

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Ok, so I got way more responses than I thought I would! Thanks everyone, glad to know I'm not the only one giving my washer a workout! I will try to respond to all of these at once. First, I guess I should have mentioned that I have another son that I breastfed for the first year so I'm not a total novice in the world of bf poo. My diet/vitamins have not changed since child was born or pregnancy, I just don't remember my first son's stool being this thin - but different baby, different tummy system, different stuff comes out of it! As I said, pedi is not concerned about his bm consistency, color, or how often he does it so that's wasn't my question but thanks for all the advice. More I was looking for suggestions about how to stop it from coming out the top, first child leaked out of the legs usually and sometimes the top, this one is always the top. I also mentioned we had started some rice cereal, thank you for the advice for and against this but we will keep at it for now, and the poo had not changed. I remember the change after the veggies/fruits/solids happen. Maybe that will help it stay contained in it's proper area later on.

I will try moving him up a size since this seems to be the most common advice and see if that helps. I wasn't going by the weight as much as the waist and legs. We'll see if it works. He usually makes his mess in his crib once a day as he does his business as soon when he wakes up so I can't catch him and prevent it. Thanks again!

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mine did this too!! I used 2 diapers for awhile. id put on what I thought was his size, and then another one over that was one size up. once he started eating solids, his poops were less watery.

I know you said you didn't want to change diaper brands, but I had this same problem with my first son, blowouts, that is. So with my second, I have been using Huggies Supreme. They've worked great for us. They have a small elastic band around the waist in the back which I have found more preventative of the famous infant blowouts. Pampers don't have the elastic.

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My only thoughts are that you should try a size 3 and see if that will help, as it will go up higher on his back. They have very stretchy tabs, even if you have to over lap the tabs, the fact that they are bigger may help. Also, does he like to be on his tummy much?? Maybe a little more time on his belly will at least lessen the opportunity for such messes. I hope it gets better soon!! ~A.~

Sorry Angela, but this is what happens with breastfed babies, they have loose stools. My baby does the same, preferably on her bouncing chair that I have to clean as well, but she only has a bowel movement only once a week, which is really lucky for me. The only thing you can do is change diapers' brand. Huggies work better for my baby most of the time (although accidents happen), and they have some special ones for young babies that are very soft.

I had to go up a size for a little while and then once the problem resolved you can go back down to the size 2.

I know you said you didn't want to change diaper brands, but I had this same problem with my first son, blowouts, that is. So with my second, I have been using Huggies Supreme. They've worked great for us. They have a small elastic band around the waist in the back which I have found more preventative of the famous infant blowouts. Pampers don't have the elastic.

mine did this too!! I used 2 diapers for awhile. id put on what I thought was his size, and then another one over that was one size up. once he started eating solids, his poops were less watery.

Huggies Supreme. They are very absorbent and almost as soft as Swaddlers. My son had sensitive skin too and the Huggies did not irritate him. They are better for boys when they get older too because they are more absorbent in the front. Good luck. :)

When my children were being breastfed... they had the loose (almost oatmealy) stools. It does sound normal and as you add more cereal and baby food as time goes... they will change. I too had the problems with escaping messes... I ultimately tried other diapers until I found one that the messes were greatly reduced (never eliminated). I've talked with other moms about diaper brands and it seems that they are a lot like shoes... each brand fits each baby differently. Some say they never leaked with Pampers or Huggies, etc... and some say the opposite. Maybe trying the Huggies premium brand will improve the problem and not irritate your little one's skin. Good luck!

I hate to tell you, but unfortunately that is most likely your fate while you continue to breastfeed until you start jar baby food. This is my 2nd child and until we started solids - we had some REALLY nasty messes! I will say whatever you do DON"T buy Huggies unless you have to. My youngest had an allergic reaction to the Pampers Cruisers and we tried Huggies and OMG - I would find piles of poop on the carpet from time to time!!!! Talk about nasty! My son would be playing with toys on the floor and the next thing I would see is YUCK all over my carpet! HUGGIES LEAK!!!!! I tried using bigger sizes, etc to NO avail! The good news is that you are on your way to solids soon - it really does help to firm up the poopy! Until then - Oxiclean ROCKS! The clorox bleach pen has saved me on white fabrics! And other than that, Travis Carpet Cleaners do a GREAT job and they are VERY reasonably priced!

Everyone is telling you to just go ahead to a bigger diaper, but I have to ask you...how much does your baby weigh?? I have to agree...BOTH of my boys (now 16 and 2) did HORRIBLY with Huggies, but GREAT with PAMPERS! (but that was just because of their build) I don't blame the brand, just not the right diaper for them. Have you talked to the pedi about what might be in YOUR diet, that could be causing this? Because it sounds to me like he's having an allergic reaction to something you ate, that is coming through in your milk, or a reaction to something in his/your environment. And since your baby is on the floor now, I would NOT use a *bleach-based* cleaning product!! I have been using safer products since my 2 year old was 2 months old! If you want more info about what I'm using, send me an email to ____@____.com . I'll be happy to send you the links to the company, and tell you more about my experiences! (Just wish I had been using these products when my 16-year-old was 2!) Feel free to call me at home if you'd like... ###-###-####. Hope we can get this cleared up soon!! ~J.~

My son did the same thing until he started solids. Which we did at 5 months. The size of the pampers should only matter if he is to big for them. We called my son the projectial pooper. He would only do it once a day, and it went everywhere. And just when you thought he was done and take the diaper off, he would lift his hiney and shoot it straight out.

Hi Angela. What a situation! I remembe those days well. My only thougths that ist hat everytime my boys blew out of a diaper, it meant they were in too small of a diaper or wearing a huggies. So, my suggestion would be to try the next bigger size diaper. We use Pampers Cruisers (swaddler when they were tiny) and that seemed to work best for my boys. I remember my oldest was in a size 3 diaper early on and in that size for quite a while. My yougest, who is 23 months has been in a size 5 for a while and now, is in a size 6. Hope that helps!

Hi Angela,
Sorry you are having this problem. 2 things- #1, maybe it's the brand of diaper, I see alot of people are hating on Huggies and loving Pampers, I have 3 kids and I think alot of it has to do with the shape of your baby's body. Maybe try some different brands or #2, it could be something in your milk. If you take lots of vitamins besides just a multivitamin, for some reason that can affect your milk, and make the babies poop like that. It's gross now, but just remember it won't be like that forever. Because as he moves on to more and more solids, they will probably be firmer stools, but then they will stink really bad! :) Just enjoy every minute with your precious baby.

Unfortunately until you start feeding solids in a few months the BM's will be very loose like that. If you don't want to switch diapers, I would get the little gerber plastic covers that you use when cloth diapering or potty training and put those over her diaper. Good luck. :)

i went through the same thing on a daily basis. there was not much to do but to change him and rinse the clothes off right away and apply a stain remover. my fav is the duel sided spray and wash, the one that has two spouts and mixes right before it hits the clothes. that worked best for those nasty yellow stains. only solids made it get better. if he poops on a schedule just make sure not to have him in his swing or bouncy. tummy time around poo time is best so it doesnt go up. other diapers only make it worse. swaddlers worked best for my son also.
now that my son is older the laundry thing is only worse. drooling, wanting to feed himself, he wears at least 3 shirts a day. so i am still doing laundry ALL the time! it doesnt get any better.

Well, I hate to say it, but you may need to change brands. I swore by swaddlers with my oldest, but they didn't do the trick with my youngest. Huggies worked well for her until she got well into solid food. I think you may just have to experiment with some different brands until you find what best fits his hindquarters ;)

My daughter had the same problem until she was on table food. The loose stools is pretty normal- liquid in, liquid out. I would try going up a diaper size and just overlap the tabs in the front. I was changing my daughter's clothes atleast 3 times a day and going up a diaper size made a huge difference!

I'm so sorry you are having to deal with so many messes and not enjoying your baby as much. Tried a cloth diaper and the old fashioned rubber pants ON TOP of the disposable diaper? Loose stools are normal in breastfed babies. Here are some things to look at and do while your are waiting for this stage to pass:
Has your diet changed any? Even anything small? Coffee, fruit, diet drinks, eggs, vitamins, medicine, sugary stuff?(sugar in your diet can make for loose stools) Write down what you are eating for three days and chart when your baby has the loose diapers. You may need a probiotic and digestive enzymes - along with EFA (Omega 3-6-9's).
Here is a link to watch for the colors in the stool:

Find a breast feeding support group with a breat feeding coach/teacher. La Leche League of Tarrant County, Texas
(Ft. Worth and Surrounding Area)

All breastfeeding mothers and mothers-to-be interested in breastfeeding are welcome to come to our meetings or call one of our Leaders for breastfeeding help or information. Babies are always welcome at our meetings.

Meeting Information

Send email to ____@____.com for information on La Leche League meetings in the following places:
Fort Worth

That is very common and normal for breastfed babies...all of my children had messy diapers and had "blow outs". Once the baby is on more solids, the diapers should not be as messy.

Try going up diaper sizes...they do make diapers for sensitive skin babies. Whole Foods has a their store brand (365)....

My baby was breast fed as well...and unfortantely the side effect of breast fed babies are loose stool. I was told it was like a laxitive to a baby. She was also supplemented with formula as well and had cereal which helped thicken the poo a bit.

As for us our daughter would pee and poop out of her diaper we used Pampers Swaddlers as well. Now as a toddler she still pees out of the back of the diaper. I noticed diapers dont have the padding all the way up the back to help absorb the liquid.

So I have started using Pampers Cruisers which has helped a lot. During the day she uses the Walmart brand White Cloud but at night we use the "Night Night Diapers" which is what we call them to differentiate the differnce....which are the Pampers Cruisers. Once we swiched diapers we have had no more leak problems from the diapers.

So I would suggest the Pampers Cruisers size 3.

I have also heard to try using the diaper covers (you know the plastic ones) to help keep the BM from getting all over him.


I think you're going to have to switch diapers or go up a size. I have 3 kids and all 3 did better with different diapers. My middle child leaked with Huggies, and only did good with Pampers, my youngest was the opposite. He leaked with Pampers and did great with Huggies. I think it's the shape of the baby or something.

Hi Angela, I can totally sympathize! Both of my boys were "up the back" poopers! :) My oldest did it during his Baptism - right through his beautiful white clothes! - all the way up to his shoulders!!! I quickly learned that the first time we had one leak out the back, it was time to go up a size. Even thought my boys' weight didn't match the package, they needed the next size up. And I loved the Pampers swaddlers and cruisers the best. I tried all kinds and those were the best for us. Breast milk BMs are supposed to be loose, so don't worry about that at all! Good luck! :)

Has he ALWAYS had the messy loose stools? Or only when you started him on cereal? There is new evidence that states that the digestive system of an infant isn't mature enough for solids until 7 to 9 months, even though most peds reccommend starting solids at 6 mo. Plus cereal is a highly processed food far removed from it's natural state. Avacodos, bananas, and sweet potatos are "safer" and more natural choices for first foods.

Here's a website to check out more info:

I don't have a solution per se--other than to point out reason they're loose is that there's little waste--kudos to you for breastfeeding your baby! I worked with an infant nutritionist who told me introducing cereal prior to 4 mos isn't such a good thing. Formula fed babies need it sooner but if you're still taking your prenatal vitamins, you don't need to introduce cereal to get the iron (although it sounds like you were aiming to get some fiber in your baby's diet?)

we introduced cereal a little too soon and my son had a reaction to grains. the nutritionist said the american diet introduces grains first NOT b/c they're easiest on the system (actually vegies are) --happened b/c of our generation that went to formula...babies became anemic that weren't breastfed and it was easier to add iron to cereals. there's a great book called super baby food FYI

anyhoo, my son had the same orange WMDs (weapons of mass destruction!) In the early days he'd only poop once a week and it was epic! Think of it as healthy BF poops.

The good news is he was 100% breastfed so they were less stinky (albeit messy) compared to formula fed babies. It does change once they get on solids. My advice is use spray n' wash, not that dreft stain remover and give yourself a pat on the back for committing to breast feeding your baby! And at babies r us they have something called a sheet saver--it ties to the sides of the crib and is placed under the bum (assuming your baby isn't too active in the crib)

L. & Ames (who has graduated to matzo-ball-like poops now that he's 13 mos old and eating solids...but still nite nurses non-stop!)

I'm so sorry to have to tell you this, but my daughters were both the same way. In fact, even though my 7-month-old is now on formula AND eating cereal/fruit/veggies every day, sometimes she still poops so much that it comes out of her diaper (and yes, they are the correct size). I don't know why some babies do it more than others, but as long as it's not actually WATERY, I don't think there's anything you can really do about it....

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