Q: I recently weaned my 1-year-old off breast milk and now he's constipated. Could it be all the new solid foods?
A: Developing a varied diet of solid foods is a big transition for your baby's digestive system, especially coming off breast milk, which is so easily digested. Some kids are more sensitive to these changes than others, so it's normal for your son to be a bit constipated now.
Most children's poop schedules will get back on track over a week or so, but if your son is very uncomfortable, add some extra fluids to his diet, like a few ounces of water with each meal of solids. Fruits like peaches, pears, and plums are also great, natural stool softeners. If your son is really struggling to poop, or if you see blood in his diaper or on the wipe, then give him a small cup of prune juice (it's pretty powerful, so be sure to dilute it with half water). We know seeing blood in your baby's diaper can be scary, but it just means that he may have developed an anal fissure (a tiny tear in the lining of the anus) as a result of passing harder stools. Anal fissures are quite common in babies, and almost always clear up on their own as their poop returns to normal. Be sure to keep track of what remedies work best for your baby, since you'll likely continue to encounter bouts of constipation as his diet expands.
Copyright 2009 Meredith Corporation.