What Could Be Wrong with My 1 Month Old?!?!

Updated on May 11, 2007
K.B. asks from Olathe, KS
25 answers

For the last two weeks my son has had excessive traped gas, darker green but loose trapped stool, along with a lot of pain, strain, grunting & screeming. It is so bad that he isn't getting very much sleep (5-10 hours at most). I took him to the doctor last Tuesday where I was told all his symptoms were "NORMAL" and given a few tips. My son has only had breast milk. After a week of changing my diet, giving him Mylacon, Gripe Water, working his legs, laying him on his side & on his belly...ect, I couldn't take that this was "NORMAL" as an answer because it is not! Yesterday, I took him to a new doctor who after hearing all the symptoms, suggested that he may be allergic to the protein in my milk & has started him on Similac Alimentum Advance & said for me to each day work one breastfeeding more into his day to the limit that doesn't bother him, maybe he can only take one or up to four/five. I started the plan yesterday and he slept until about 1am straight other than for his feedings. Since then he has barely slept & still having a hard time so now I am worried that the new formula is also hurting him. Please let me know if you have experienced this same thing & what was given/done to solve the problem. Thank you all!

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L.K.

answers from Springfield on

DO NOT STOP BREASTFEEDING!!!!!

Please contact your local La Leche League. I would rule out all other things before going to formula. Also, go to www.askdrsears.com and look up info. on "high needs baby".

I also thought there had to be something wrong with my first son because he cried so much. He also had lots of gas. He may have had a reflux problem, but I never put him on med. One thing that helped a lot was that I let him sleep on my chest. I would prop myself up with pillows and try to sleep some myself. I sometimes hated it and my tail bone hurt so bad that I would cry, but if I had to do it again I would. Now that I have a happy, healthy three year old it was worth it. I think I will always have a special relationship with him because of what we went through when he was an infant. It was hard and I felt very isolated, but it was worth it. Please ask for help when you need it. And please look up info. on high needs babies. La Leche League can also be a lifesaver.

Good luck.

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K.B.

answers from Wichita on

HI K.,
Wow, it sounds like you have a comlicated issue. My best advice for you is to seek help from a certified La Leche League member. I know they will have good/accurate information. Here's the link to find your local league. You can attend a meeting or call a leader who would be more than happy to help you. http://www.lalecheleague.org/WebUS.html
My fear is that the formula IS NOT going to help, but hurt. Breastmilk is the best, most gentle thing for you baby. I really encourage you to contact La Leche League. Don't hesitate...they will give you the best help!!!! Good luck and let me know what happens please!
K.

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B.S.

answers from Kansas City on

Try looking at your diet. I found my son got very gassy when I ate/drank things that would make myself that way: broccoli, cabbage, any carbonated drinks, beans, etc... He had such powerful poop explosions it would ALWAYS come out of his diaper and up his back. Try cutting back on that kind of stuff that can cause gas and see if it helps. I don't believe you need to throw out breastfeeding altogether. There is no formula "better" for him than your breastmilk. You've just got to watch what gets into your breastmilk. Also, be cautious of any medicine or vitamins/minerals you may be taking yourself as they can sometimes pass into breastmilk too.

And although it's hard to see your little man in pain and uncomfortable, your calm voice and soothing touch might help ease his discomfort--so try to relax YOURSELF and it might help relax HIM. (And yes, this can be hard when he's been crying for hours straight and overly tired!)

Good luck :)

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M.S.

answers from Kansas City on

My two-month old daughter was having some of the same symptoms along with baby acne that seemed out of control to me. After doing the Mylacon and other things to try and remedy, we went back to the pediatrician. He ended up putting her on Zantac and had me limit the amount of dairy in my diet and cut out anything that had peanut in it. The Zantac has done wonders for the acid reflux and her skin cleared up almost overnight. I'm sure every doc is different, but mine never even suggested trying any type of formula. Good luck getting it remedied.

~M.

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K.S.

answers from Springfield on

K.,

Similar symptoms in my son also turned out to be acid reflux. Prescription: Prevacid, small frequent meals, waiting 30 minutes after eating to lay him down, and putting something under his mattress so he slept on an incline. Those things helped a lot, and he outgrew the problem by about 1 year.

Good luck!
K.

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A.J.

answers from Kansas City on

I know what you're talking about for the protein's. My 7mos old son had that diagnosed as the cause for his constant puking when he was first born too. He would soak his clothes sometimes 30 mins after eating other times 2hrs after eating. So I couldn't have any dairy what-so-ever.
I don't really know what would be the cause for the straining. My daughter had something similar but I don't really remember her being like that. Her rectum wasn't developed in a straight line like it should've been. The doctor said there was a curve in it. So it was hard for her to go. The poor thing would strain to go and it killed me to watch it. He said she would grow out of it she just needed time to grow. She's fine and has been since a few months after that. So I don't know if the doctor needs to check into how things are functioning for your little boy. But I guess it couldn't hurt. The wonderful doctor we had, he moved away a few years ago:( , he could tell just from sticking his pinky partly in and knew something was wrong. So I hope whatever it is, they figure it out and he gets to feeling better.

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S.S.

answers from Kansas City on

We had the same problem and still do. My son will be 2 in June. I didnt breastfeed. He was strictly a formula baby. I didnt have enough milk to feed him so it wasnt really an option. Anyway, they put us on soy formula and as a baby our gas problems went away. If you just started this new routine yesterday then dont give up on it. It takes time to get the other out of his system. I was told when we switched formula that it could take up too two weeks for his system to adjust. It is a long process. We lived on the gas drops and many hours patting his butt. That seemed to be all that worked. Today we have gas problems depending on what we eat. He has to have a very bland diet. But now they say it is nothing to be concerned with.
I hope this helps. Good luck!!!

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M.B.

answers from Wichita on

I had similar problems with my oldest. He was strickly breastfed and really fussy and having dark green poops. My friend is a doula and contacted some of the mid wives she knew, He was getting to much foremild and not enough hind milk. They encouraged me to nurse twice off of one breast. That way he was getting enough hindmilk. Fore milk is calorie milk and hind milk is protein milk! It helped it was amazing!! Hope this helps you!! Good luck!

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A.M.

answers from Lawton on

I'll second the LLL suggestion. Someone there will know how to help. :)

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R.U.

answers from Oklahoma City on

I am so sorry! Yes it does sound like a sensitivity to milk. My baby had some of those same problems due to prematurity. The new dr is right. The hypoallergenic formula will help your baby feel better. Keep pumping so your supply doesn't diminish. You can donate extra milk to other babies in need. Eventually he will probably be able to breastfeed again. Mine did. In fact he didn't wean until 28mo! Let me know if I can be of any other assistance ~ [email protected]____.com

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W.B.

answers from Kansas City on

Hi K.,
In addition to what everyone else has said I wanted to add a few things..

*Since the Dr has put him on formula make sure you are using the correct flow of nipple for him it should atleast be newborn or slow stage or something like this.

*You also might try the Dr. Browns bottles they work awesome alot less air in their tummy, I use the playtex ventair and the browns one works even better.

*When you are fedding him since he is still real little you might burp him every ounce (it depends on how fast he eats) but definitely every 2 ounces.
In addition to the burping when you feed him make him more sit upright and then when you are done and you have to do something put him in a swing, bouncey seat, something that makes him sit up and not lay down for at least 30 or 45 minutes. And no motion like swinging, bouncey, no fast motion.
Also before you start feeding him make sure you have changed his diaper anything you may need to do thios way you don't move him around alot.
*As for the fussing find what sooths him if it his swing use and go with it for these first few weeks maybe even up to 3 months if you have to. He can sleep in his carseat, stoller, bouncey seat, swing, I know it's not the "ideal thing to do " but you have to go with what works at this point.
*Here are a few things I have found to get the burps out. Put him on your shoulder and pat his back or do the same but rub his back in a circular motion. Also sit him on your leg with one hand on his chest and the other patting his back. Also lay him across you lap on his tummy and rub or pat his back. Hopefully you find something that works for the both of you. W. P.S. also don't become stressed out it you become upset so will he you have to stat calm and he will stay calm. If you need a moment and there is nobody around put him somewhere safe like in his crib or the swing, wherever band walk out of the room for five minutes or less. You are doing good hang in there.

Also I want to add you need to do what is best for YOUR baby and don't let anyone feel guilty about it. I haven't breastfed any of my 4 kids why, I felt uncomfortable (I tried with my oldest) and the most important thing is I do not like alot of vegetables or fruit, I'm picky about salad, I don't like seafood or fish. So what good would it do to breastfeed when I don't like alot of these foods, when I know she can get formula that is as good in my opinion. Breast milk is best for your child if you eat a well balanced diet. I have a 15 yr old and he was on formula and he has turned out just fine. And 15 years ago formula wasn't as good as it is now. If breast feeding doesn't work out for your child then it doesn't and you should not feel guilty about that. You need to do what you feel is best. And if what is best is him having formula than thats what it is. My 4th child counldn't eat the regular enfamil lipil but rather than giving her a medicine I don't believe she needs I switched to enfamil gentlease which did the trick, She hasn't vomited since we switched to that when she was a week old. If you do continue to keep him on formula and breastmilk it will take him awhile to get his tummy adjusted to what is going on. With breastfeeding they digest it easier and with formula it takes a little longer, and sometimes you have to be your own childs dr because you are the one that lives with this child. 2 other formulas that you might try is the carnation good start and the gentlease. But whatever you do don't use the off brands like the parents choice gentle I tried it with my 4th and I didn't like it and neither did she. Goodluck and hang in there.

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M.G.

answers from Kansas City on

Oh Honey! You don't have to switch to formula even if your child is having an allergic reaction to your breastmilk. It's not YOU, it's what you are eatiing. My son is allergic to cows milk and I never gave him formula. I cut milk out of my diet (this means milk, cheese, butter, etc. You can get lots of information about it from a nutritionist or even on the web. If cutting the obvious sources of cow's milk from your diet helps, you might consider starting to read the labels on EVERYTHING you consume. Look for casein, casenate, whey, butter, cheese, and anything that says milk or "from milk". My son is now 4 and a half and he is getting ready for his first "oral challenge" from the allergist where they give him milk in a controlled environment to gague his reaction. By the way, he is also allergic to peanuts and when he was little, he was allergic to eggs as well, milk and egg allergies often go together, so you might want to avoid eggs as well. My son's allergist told me that he could have things like cakes or cookies made with egg but no actual eggs or baked goods brushed with egg whites for a glaze. If you find this to be the case, please feel free to contact me so I can help you out with what you can use as substitutes for some basic foods (like bread--most commercial breads have milk in them)

Good luck!
M.

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K.

answers from Kansas City on

As said by many....please don't stop breastfeeding. The switch to any formula is so hard on a baby's digestive system it can actually make constipation worse. Breastmilk is the best nuturtion for your son and the easiest for him to digest. I would also suggest contacting a La Leche League...they are wonderful support. My son had horrible constipation for about 5 months, he is now 10 months and we are just getting it worked out. What worked for us was prune juice. He got 2 ounces a day, usually right before he nursed first thing in the morning and then around mid-afternoon. We bought organic prune juice, just to make me feel better. As long as we kept on the route he was fine, normal bowel movements. He started taking the juice around 1 and half months. Seeing your child in any kind of pain is horrible. There is a presrciption laxative that our ped. recommend if natural remedies didn't work.

K. J

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J.P.

answers from Kansas City on

Unfortunatly, it is normal...for about 25% of kids. My first little boy was a bit colicy as well. It will get better around when he is about 3 or 4 months old. I understand your frustration. Those are the same things the Dr. told me to do too. Didnt work for me either ha. Especially the Mylacon drops. Here are a few things that worked for me:

*First, start feeding him about 30 min. earlier than you have been. Dont wait until he asks to be fed. If he is too hungry when he eats, it will cause more gas. If you are still breast feeding, then start feeding him an hour and a half to two hours after you STARTED the previous feeding. Make sure to burp him a couple of times through out the feeding. Be patient, because sometimes thoes little air bubbles are not so easy to get out. Dont settle for a little burp either. Keep going until either you get a big whooshy burp or at least three little ones. It is my opinion from my experience that this is the main cause of gas with little ones next to the obvious eating a bowl of beans before you feed him.

*find music you both like to listen to, and sing along. It is stress relieving for both you and baby. If you are upset he is going to cry. I found it helpfull when I was sitting up at 2am with a crying baby to think of it as I had an energetic child who was upset that he couldnt talk, run, or controll his arms enough to scratch an itch. As crazy as it sounds, it helped me keep my calm. I would talk to him all about it, and he would calm down and fall asleep. Remember he is used to hearing his mommys calm loving voice ALL THE TIME.

*Lay him belly down on a warm towel straight from the drier,

*You can get a vibrating bouncy chair (bless the person who invented that) pretty inexpensive, just about anywhere.

*Swadle him in his blankets, put him in his bouncy chair or carrier, and set him by the drier while it is running. The sound and the vibration will lul him to sleep just like a car ride. Remember, there were a lot of constant sounds in your tummy. He is not used to going to sleep in the quiet of night. Through out his entire existance he has had rythmic sounds to listen to. It might be such an adjustment for him that he finds it difficult to sleep with out it.

Hope this helps.

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C.B.

answers from Oklahoma City on

It could be any number of things. Babies do this from time to time. It could be nothing. It could also be food allergies or some GI problem. If you are really worried follow your gut! You could also try taking him to a pediatric GI or pediatric allergist.

For the record I have 2 kids with food allergies, and one of which also has some GI issues.

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D.T.

answers from Tulsa on

Try to relax. The protien allergy will also cause reflux and digestion stress. I know it's tough to see him constantly in pain because basically all he ever does is digest. Expect a lot of spit up. I haven't checked up on the formula you're using but I switched to soy with my younger two boys after suffering a long messy 9 months with my oldest one.

It is possible to nurse and bottle feed if you have the right bottles and or nipples for the bottles.

Believe me, my middle boy was a miserable little guy until he was fully on the formula. I continued to comfort nurse until he was well over a year though.

It takes some time for him to learn that eating isn't going to hurt him. It also takes some time for both of you to relax during feedings.

I would suggest baby massage before feedings. Then an additional session afterward. I don't remember all the moves but the most important one is the tummy massage (the one you will use instead of patting his back to burp): rub down his left side, across his lower abdomen or lower back, up his right side, across the lower ribs. Gentle pressure. If he's on his back, this will help him "go" if he's on his tummy this will help the gas either come up or aerate his diaper. You can be a little vigorous or use Dr. Karps, baby bouncing technique before hand.

It may be that he needs to be kept up right (at a 30 to 45% angle) after feeding. For my middle boy, I just let him sleep on my chest as I napped in the recliners. For my youngest I popped him in a sling and set off to play with big brother. I would suggest the sling since it's "hands free" and more like your womb. If you really need a rest, use the infant car seat/carrier to hold him up. My youngest boy slept in his carseat either on or off the stroller instead of a crib or bassinette for the first 4 months of his life.

Hang in there, it will get better. right now, you're sole responsibility should be the kids. If you don't do the housework because the baby needs you, that's okay until he's a few months older and stays awake for a little while. That's why we have husbands.

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L.H.

answers from Tulsa on

Hi K. B,

I am new to the site but I saw your problem and thought I would let you know about my daughter when she was an infant. She had the same symtoms...I started her on Isomil. It is soy milk. Your baby may be lactose intolerant. You can also try DARK Kayro Syrup. About 1-2 tsp in his formula.

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W.S.

answers from Lawton on

Hi K., my name is W.. I personally do not have any experience with this but my best friend does. Her baby recently turned 6 months old, and about one or two months ago, she kept noticing that her baby had bloody stools. After a few tests, her doctor said that she was allergic to the protein in her milk. Her doctor told her to go cold turkey and stop breast feeding and she also started on the Alimentum. Now her baby is doing wonderful. She has no more bloody stools, she isn't as grouchy, and she seem to be gaining so much more weight. Good luck to you and your little one K..

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C.M.

answers from Kansas City on

Is he receiving iron? It almost sounds like too much iron to me. Just a guess. Good luck. I know how scary and frustrating not knowing can be.
God Bless,
C.

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T.B.

answers from Oklahoma City on

Hi K.

I think like a lot of people are saying it could be what you are eating. It might be a milk or lactose problem if you eat a lot of dairy products. It also might be a gluten allergy, from things like wheat and other grains, so that might be worth staying away from. The other thing too I was wondering, if you are still taking pre natal vitamins, or a multi. Some times too much iron can make stool dark even green. If you are it might be to much iron for his little system. If you want to or your dr. said it was a good idea to continue a vitamins try one w/o iron. I know babies need iron, but to much can upset a tummy and even be toxic. Plus if you eat a lot of red meat or foods w/ iron in them that is even more for him to digest.

The other thing that can cause tummy problems is if he as any type of yeast infection, have you or the dr. checked to make sure he does not have thrush (yeast inection in his mouth).

As far as just words of advise, if you find a formula that agrees with him go with it (you might try a soy based formula instead of milk based)to reduce stress. If changing your diet starts to work too you can do both. The formula is good to use at night, it takes longer to digest then breast milk so provided he fees well he will sleep for longer periods of time. Also with formula at night, even though you can pump breast milk into a bottle, there is no other option with formula so hubby can do a night time feeding or two so you can be better rested for the next day. If meds and diet don't help and he just has a has a harder time digesting things, get some help. You need a break and you need some help. It will help you and him. Put some cotten balls in your ears, hand him to a trusted friend, family member, hubby, or who ever is not on empty as far as sleep and patients. Go take a long bath and a long nap. Every thing will seem not so bad when you take some time away. Crying babies can really wear a peron out especially when they are your own because aside from wanting quiet you it hurts a mommies heart when they can't fix their babies hurting. As you get less and less sleep things might start to seem worse then they are, sleep depravation is not going to help matters. Take care of your self too it will help you recover faster and easier and will also help with postpardom blues or depression, sleep depravation makes all that worse and with a fussy baby you need it even more.

Well good luck and keep us posted on what works.

T.

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V.C.

answers from Joplin on

K. I had the same thing wrong with my little girl who is now 13 years old and I stopped breast feeding and went through a few different doctors because I too knew something was wrong. I finally found a doctor that told me that she was not digesting or processing the iron very well. She ended up on Nutramagen. It is very expensive formula but it is not as harsh formula and she was fine ever since. Talk to your pediatrician. I am sure they will verify. If you have any other questions let me know. Also if you have WIC. they will cover the nutramigen.

V.

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J.A.

answers from Springfield on

I saw that another individual or two had referred you to Gentlease and I just wanted to concur with them that I found this to work wonders with my daughter. I, too, experienced the EXCESSIVE crying that you did. When I did research on colic, I didn't even find it to fit. Most resources seemed to define it as unconsolable crying for 3-4 hours, 4 or 5 times a week; at the time, I thought that would have been a blessing! Ella would cry for DAYS and she was hardly sleeping. Concerned, I took her to her ped. who told me the good news was that she was fine and the bad news was that she was fine (Ha, Ha). To get to the point though, he referred me to Enfamil Gentlease, and within a week, her crying had decreased dramatically. I know breastfeeding is best, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. To be honest, I breastfed for eight weeks and felt very little guilt when I switched to the Gentlease (I had always had to supplement anyway though b/c I hardly produced any milk) In our particular case, it seemed much easier on her tummy and resulted in a much happier baby and mommy. Although, if you can do both the formula and the breastmilk that would definitely be ideal.

As far as the formula not helping either, you might want to give it just a little longer; I think I've been told it takes about a week to adjust to new formula. Anyway, I sympathize, and just remember whatever you end up doing, it will improve at the very most, in a month or two. Stay strong:) !

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A.M.

answers from Oklahoma City on

I know it is not what you want to hear, but it sounds like colic. My second and third son both breastfeed went through a period of about 1 to 2 monthes where they would scream and have really bad gas. Nothing would relieve my second childs crying and pain, except if I could get him to sleep long enough to relax and then the gas would escape. My third child would relax if I would breastfeed him during this time he would relax. Eventually their stomachs would adjust and be just fine.

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M.

answers from Wichita on

Hi K.,
Being a new mom can be quite daunting. You worry about all the phases your child goes through, the crying, colic, feedings, normal poop and pee. There should be a "First-Time Mom's Club" or something to initiate all new moms into the wonderful joys of motherhood. I understand exactly what you are going through.

First, let me ask you. Are you pumping? Does your son sound like he is coughing or choking when he nurses? Does he struggle when nursing and become fussy? I was pumping when I first started nursing and it caused me to have overactive letdown. I wasn't pumping much and thought it would be a good idea to store up a little milk for my baby when I return to work. Let me tell you. Not a good idea. Unfortunately, I didn't realize this until a month later. When I stopped pumping altogether, things were much better. My milk adjusted properly, and baby was much happier. Here is a website about overactive letdown:

http://www.kellymom.com/newman/02colic_in_bf_baby.html#fa...

If you're in Wichita and need some support or just someone who knows what you're going through, feel free to contact me.

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C.L.

answers from Kansas City on

My daughter was breastfed and we had the same problem from about one to three months. Our postpartum doula was a lifesaver and she suggested that we try using a blowdryer to calm the crying. I thought her suggestion was a quack one until one day when I was about to lose my mind from the screaming, I turned the blowdryer on. She stopped crying instantly and about 15 minutes later, was sleeping peacefully.

That was three months and two blowdryers ago. She still goes to sleep with the blowdryer on each night at 7pm. I can't say enough about how much of my sanity was saved by this trick.

As for the crying, my daughter used mylicon too and it didn't help. I altered my diet and that didn't help. She was just a very fussy baby who had trouble shutting herself off so she could sleep (she's still a very light sleeper). I didn't quit breastfeeding and once she began sleeping with the blowdryer, although she didn't stop crying some each evening, after a couple of weeks she turned a corner and things got much better.

Hang in there! It will get better and if you feel strongly about breastfeeding, keep doing it. It's your choice and sustaining breastfeeding won't hurt any more than switching to formula if the problem is not food related (and I'd venture that it isn't). Some babies are just higher maintenance than others.

One note: if you do try the blowdryer, buy one with a cool setting button. We use a wire tie to keep the button pressed all the time and only run the dryer on that setting. If you don't, the heating element could overheat causing a fire. On the cool setting though, you can safely run the dryer for a couple of hours (I shut the one in my daughter's room off when I go to bed each evening so it runs daily about 2-3 hours).

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