Some of the home remedies for infant constipation include tummy massage, giving apple juice, giving your baby a warm bath, giving dark corn syrup, increasing fluid intake, prune juice and coconut water.
Infants are a bundle of joy. If anything happens to them, your heart will stop and you will be running around trying to find the right cure or treatment. Thankfully, when it comes to infant constipation, there are effective home remedies that you can use without putting your little one at risk.
Source: New Kids Center
Causes of Infant Constipation
Before we look at effective home remedies for infant constipation, wouldn’t you like to know more about what causes constipation in infants?
One of the most common causes of constipation among infants is transitioning from breast milk to formula and eating semi-solids. This change in the diet and reduction in fluid intake can lead to constipation.
Other causes of infant constipation include:
- Emotional stress
Home Remedies for Infant Constipation
Avoid remedies that are used to treat adult constipation, as they can be dangerous for your little angel. Some home remedies can be harsh on a small baby. It is therefore important to choose remedies that are mild yet effective in case of babies. Use the following home remedies that are especially for infants. They are mild, extremely safe and very effective in treating a case of constipation:
Gently massaging your baby’s abdomen can, at times, stimulate the waste to travel from the bowel to the rectum. Use gentle hands to massage your infant’s abdomen in a clockwise direction. This will cause the stools to move downwards and cause the baby to evacuate his bowels.
Just like adults, babies too require fibre for smooth bowel movements. When fibre is missing or reduced in their diet, it can result in constipation. Give your baby some apple juice, which contain pectin, a soluble fibre. You can pour the apple juice in your baby’s feeding bottle. One bottle a day should suffice. Also, make the juice at home by juicing apples with the skin, as pectin is present in the skin.
Warm water can help relax the rectal muscles and cause the stool to move out without causing pain. Run some warm water into your baby’s bathtub. Add about two to three tablespoons of baking soda and help your baby relax in this soothing bath. Both the warm water and baking soda help relax muscles and can ease constipation in your infant.
Dark Corn Syrup
This syrup is available in supermarkets and contains complex sugar proteins that aid in retaining water in the bowels. Add one teaspoon of the syrup in about 4 ounces of milk and give it to your little one. It will cause loose stools, so don’t panic. Once the bowel movement becomes regular, discontinue the syrup or your baby will have frequent loose stools, resulting in dehydration and sore rectal muscles.
Increase Fluid Intake
If you notice your infant is not getting adequate fluids, it could be the cause for the constipation. Increase your baby’s fluid intake by giving him more water, soups and natural fruit juices to ease the constipation. The fluid will soften the stools and allow them to pass out smoothly, without causing pain or discomfort to the infant.
Even adults use prune juice for constipation. You too can use the juice for your darling. The juice has laxative properties and hence, you should dilute it before giving it to the infant. If your baby is over 4 months, you can add about 1 Oz of juice in 4 Oz of milk. You can feed your baby this concoction twice a day. On the other hand, if the infant is less than 4 months, add just a tablespoon of the juice in 4 Oz of breast milk. It can be fed to the baby twice a day. Remember prune juice will cause frequent bowel movements, so make sure your baby stays well-hydrated.
This nourishing water is replete in fibre, vitamins and minerals. Coconut water is a natural diuretic and is known to ease constipation in adults and babies. You can give your little one not more than 2 to 3 Oz of coconut water a day to soothe the abdominal discomfort and facilitate evacuation of the bowels. Start with about 1 Oz of the water to see how well your baby tolerates it. Don’t go overboard with coconut water, as it can result in diarrhoea in infants.
These are the most effective home remedies to deal with infant constipation. However, if your infant seems in extreme pain and discomfort, consult your paediatrician right away.