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Constipation and water intake

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  • Constipation and water intake

    My baby's been having constipation since I started supplementing with FM. I'm not sure whether its because the brand is unsuitable, or because she cant take FM well. At first I was using enfalac HA,, then I thought maybe this brand is not suitable, so switched to Simillac excellence. After which she pooed, but now she stopped pooing again. The first time, she was constipated for 5 days, this time round its been 3rd-4th day and no poo still.

    Just wondering, is it normal as a 'transition' when switching to FM? This constipation is making her really cranky, any idea what I can do? My paed told me to buy infant suppository for her, but I'm worried that this problem wont be resolved on its own (I mean, cant be using suppositories forever right?).

    Oh dear, my BM supply is dipping (no time/energy to pump), hope I can find a brand that suits her well asap.
    Last edited by mango; 07-11-2004, 12:16 PM.

  • #2
    Maybe too drastic switch from total BM to several feeds of pure FM, can try mixing half BM with half FM for some feeds? My gf's bb was on mostly FM and some BM feeds for 1+mth, suddenly suspected lactose intolerance, so was advised to switch to total BM- she had to suddenly increase her BM supply. On feeds that she couldn't supply so much BM (and the PD had cautioned for her baby's age/ size, MUST give 90ml every 3hrs), she tried mixing some BM and FM into each feed, rather than pure FM for certain feeds. Seems to help.

    I was drinking the nursing tea since hospital discharge, daily for 1+wk. Didn't drink during hospitalisation cos my LC was feeling "conservative" abt the blend (since I couldn't remember exact ingredients). Not sure if it helped BM supply... doesn't seem to?

    I keep a schedule, notes of pumping amount, feeding duration/ amount too, for some sort of reassurance. I can't bear to dump EBM, no matter how small the amount, so I save time by refrigerating used pump. Other than COLD pump pressed against breast, seems fine enough.
    Last edited by Medusa; 05-11-2004, 11:29 AM.


    • #3
      happybean, I dont have time/energy to step up the frequency, if I can find time to pump regularly every 3 hours, I'll be happy enough. Actually I started on enfalac HA cause paed gave sample, but because it caused her constipation, I switched to similac excel.

      Mel, but its been 2 weeks since I intro FM, so by right should have adapted. BTW, for your friend, you mean she mixed FM and BM into the same feed/bottle? I thought not supposed to do this?


      • #4
        Hi Mango,

        It's very normal for baby to poo irregularly esp from BM to FM. FM is a lot heatier than BM, esp brands like Similac and S26 Gold.

        U can try dilluting the FM? Say, instructions say a spoon for 60ml water, u can try 1 spoon for 70ml water or 75ml. Try to give your baby more water to drink as well.. Since u are still bf, u can be of help too! U can eat food that helps to poo or contains more fiber like papaya(poo comes out smelling like one, yucks! :lol), sweet potato etc so that when u bf, these food will indirectly pass to her too! It works for me

        Quote: My paed told me to buy infant suppository for her, but I'm worried that this problem wont be resolved on its own (I mean, cant be using suppositories forever right?).

        Not really. It helps her to establish a routine for a day or two or three, once she gets the hang of it, she will poo automatically the very next day.

        Usually, most babies will have this problem-> constipation. U've not seen a much worse case yet, that is poop cannot come out! Too hard.. My baby just went through it last week. Really heart wrenching! He cried and screamed so badly, coz the stool was rock hard and huge, much bigger than the anus! I had to squeeze it out for him, else i think he will cry till he turns green..

        Last edited by cherie; 05-11-2004, 02:14 PM.


        • #5
          Chris, yup, a "blend" of BM and FM cos she couldn't up her BM supply fast enough (since she was on partial BFG at start) to meet her PD's stipulation of 90ml per 3hrs.
          I gather the FM been causing constipation since day one? Then she hasn't adapted... maybe the BM blended in would help. Rather than pure FM feeds which may cause hard blockage... even if some later feeds are pure BM, there's already earlier blockage?
          Maybe try the suppositories to clear up problem first, then transition to BM-FM blends, slowly increasing the FM proportion as you monitor?


          • #6
            Thank goodness, she pooed just a while ago- looks like 5 day's worth to me
            But I'm puzzled- I thought constiption should be hard stools? How come her stools were ALL runny and paste-like? :huh: I'm keeping my fingers crossed that she'll continue to poo daily.

            Mel, Then I think I'll add some BF to her FM during nightfeeds and hope it helps.

            Cherie, I'm currently already giving her more water than recommended on the tin of FM; But not too much, instead of 90m, I use 100ml of water.


            • #7
              Originally posted by mango
              she pooed just a while ago- looks like 5 day's worth to me
              Hehe, good thing you're using disposable diapers!


              • #8
                Originally posted by mel171103kev
                Hehe, good thing you're using disposable diapers!
                Yes!! If not I'll probably just throw away that nappy, you would too if you saw the amount of poo, its really unbelieveable LOL.


                • #9
                  Hi Chris,

                  My baby had constipation too, after I started giving her antacids for her reflux problem. She didn't poo for three days and when she finally did, it was one big mess. The consistency was what you described as well, very runny and brown in colour.

                  Babies who are on FM need to drink more water as FM has lower percentage of water compared to BM (85%) so maybe that's why she's constipated. I mean drinking water on its own, not just adding more water when you are mixing the FM.

                  And yes, it's alright to blend FM and BM together. That's what I did during the first week when my BM supply was low.

                  My BM supply is also dropping so now I have to pump as frequently as I can manage - only four times a day. Wish I had more time and energy but it's difficult.

                  I find drinking chicken soup cooked with peanuts, black beans and mulberry helps giving me more milk. Maybe you can try asking somebody to cook that for you? Some people swear by fenugreek (some kind of herbs) and Mother's Milk Tea but I can't get them here.


                  • #10
                    Chris, glad to know baby's pooed!

                    The poo could be pastelike because you're still bf.

                    Even bf babies may not poo regularly. I've heard of a fully bf baby who didn't poo for 14 days (!!) but was still energetic and behaving normally - the baby's body used the bm very efficiently!

                    But you mentioned crankiness in Faye so perhaps it's the adjustment to the fm. Since she'd been fully bf for a while, it could be a shock to her system.

                    Your bm supply could be down because you've been supplementing. Is it because you're exhausted in the nights? How about pumping in the day, when baby is nursing - that would stimulate let down and help you obtain more milk. Build up a store slowly and then switch back to bm for night feeds (a small fridge & warmer in the room would help)? Do you nurse directly at night? You could try the lying down position, to minimise sleep disruption.

                    Good luck!


                    • #11

                      Ariel, you can get the milk tea from Moms in Mind. Contains the following herbs:

                      *More about the Main Herbs Used
                      (we may use more than what is stated - but these are the main herbs):
                      The Bitters:

                      Fenugreek Seed is proven more reliable for increasing milk supply as a tea infusion, especially when combined with aromatic seeds to aid digestion & absorption.

                      Hops Flowers reduces hypertension and hence should not be used during pregnancy. It is slightly sleep inducing, balances moods and hormone levels. It is often prescribed to mothers of twins for more milk supply.

                      Nettleis high in chlorophyll, abundant in Vit A, C, D, K, postassium, calcium, phosphorus, iron, and sulphur, thus providing nourishing vitamins for mother and baby. It also diminishes pain during and after birth, prevents haemorrhaging after birth, reduces haemorrhoids and is an effective galactagogue.

                      Alfafa is rich in chlorophyll and vitamin K, which promotes clotting. stimulates the appetite, aids digestion, and increases breastmilk.

                      The Aromatic Seeds:
                      Fennel Seed diminishes afterbirth pains and aids in digestion for both mother & baby. Fennel settles the stomach and provides relief for heartburn and nausea. Also improves the digestion of the other herbs in mixed tea blends.

                      Anise is another digestive aid, giving relief for heartburn and nausea like Fennel. It is also an excellent treatment for colicky babies if mother drinks it before nursing. The antispasmodic effect is easily transferred through the breastmilk. Many mothersclaim that anise has a mood enhancing effect.


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by mogmick
                        It is also an excellent treatment for colicky babies if mother drinks it before nursing.
                        I didn't know that, maybe I should continue drinking the nursing tea as some sort of preventive. :huh:


                        • #13
                          Thanks mogmick!


                          • #14
                            Mag, I've stopped nursing directly for a while, I'm feeding EBM (as much as I can pump whenever I can pump) and FM now. Baby wanted to latch on few times every hour for the entire day, everyday, and I couldnt get anything else done. I needed to get her weaned off this habit and I also needed to know how much she is drinking at each serving so that her feeding schedule can be more fixed; Which is why in the end I decided to feed only BM via bottle.


                            • #15
                              For those of you who are not on TBF, do you feed water to your baby? If so, how many times a day, specifically when and how many ml?