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When to Worry: Constipation

If your baby hasn't pooped in awhile, does that mean she is suffering from constipation? Learn how to tell how the symptoms and what you should do to relieve her pain.

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-By now, you're probably all too familiar with your baby's poop, its color, its consistency, and of course its frequency. So, if your newborn usually goes after every feeding and then she suddenly holds out for three days, is it constipation? Probably not. Constipation has more to do with the consistency of the stool than the frequency. It's actually quite common for babies to go several days without a bowel movement. Look for these signs to help determine constipation. If your baby is constipated, her stool will be firm and compact and may look like little pebbles or logs. You may also see a little blood in her diaper because hard poop can tear the rectal wall. If her stool is soft even if she goes days between bowel movements, it's probably not constipation. Diet change is another factor. Constipation is common when babies switch to formula and after they start solid foods. If her belly is bloated and tender, that can be a sign that her intestines are backed up. If you suspect constipation, talk to your doctor about possible ways to alleviate the problem.