Constipation In Babies – Why It Happens And Signs To Watch Out For

A baby’s poop is something that swings on both sides of the coin. While some babies poop twice every day, there are others who poop only once every 5 days and that’s still absolutely fine. However, pooping once in 5 days does not mean your baby is constipated. This is something that is to be understood. Constipation in babies is something that every parent goes through – whether early in infancy or when the baby is a little grown up. But what causes constipation? There are a number of reasons for the same. Here are a few of the common ones.


It is a given fact that most of the times an infant will be constipated because he is being fed formula. The reason why this happens is breast-milk is very easily digestible while formula milk is not so. It is also highly likely that when you transition baby from breast milk to formula, his stomach may take some time to adjust, causing constipation.

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Cow’s milk

Cow’s milk happens to be one of the culprits to upsetting baby’s stomach. Cow’s milk contains excess protein which makes it difficult for baby to digest it easily. And the worse is if your baby has an allergy or intolerance to it, his body will not accept the milk leading to constipation.

I had a very bad experience after I tried to transition my baby to cow’s milk from formula and breast milk. My daughter was constipated for two days and used to cry from stuck up poop and stomach ache. I then realized how wrong it was to suddenly introduce cow’s milk when I should have slowly introduced it in her diet.

Solid foods

It is highly likely that if you have started your baby on solids, he may have constipation after eating certain foods. Giving your baby excess apple, banana or cereal can contribute to an upset stomach. Although it is very good if your baby loves eating these foods, but limit the amount to once every other day in order to avoid episodes of constipation.

ALSO READ – Foods To Avoid When Breastfeeding – A Personal Experience

Mom’s Diet

Every heard your mothers or mothers-in-law telling you to watch what you eat if you’re breastfeeding? That’s because if you eat anything wrong, it will directly affect your baby’s stomach.

For me, on certain says, if I consume more cow’s milk in a day (say 2-3 glasses), my daughter usually passes a hard stool the following day.

Now how do you know for sure that your baby is constipated? Watch out for these signs and symptoms in him.

  1. When your baby is constipated, he will refuse eating foods and/or milk.
  2. He may have a hard stomach which is painful to the touch.
  3. There is a chance that a toddler may start walking on tip-toes in order to avoid painful poop coming out.
  4. There is obviously a prolonged gap in two poops. If your baby poops once in 3-5 days, that’s normal. Anything beyond that time period requires a doctor’s intervention.
  5. Whenever your baby tries to poop, his face is strained and red from straining.
  6. He obviously cries or gets frustrated while pooping.
  7. Your baby does not pass gas as often as he did before constipation.

Please note that although a baby with only liquid diet may not have episodes of constipation very frequently, but these given signs should never be ignored.

Have you ever had your baby constipated? Why did you think that happened? What signs or symptoms did your baby show? Share with us in the comments.