Being a new mom it’s come up more times than not in my head, “am I feeding her enough? Am I not feeding her correctly? Is her poop a sign of a bigger problem or is this new color normal?” We have all been there as moms. We worry so much about our precious bundles of joy that we often get caught up and obsessed with even the smallest details in life. Something that Dads ( well most of them) can’t understand. They think we are overreacting and when we think about calling the doctor or bringing the baby in for another visit it almost makes us sound like hysterical nuts. The good news is there is a way to tell if your baby is having healthy normal bowel movements and if they aren’t.
The normal is the good news of this story. The normal is sending you signs that your baby is healthy and you, mom, are doing everything correctly to make sure your child has the best possible life. The abnormal poops mean that your child could have a serious underlying illness or that they aren’t getting the nutrients they need when you’re feeding them. First, we will go over what’s normal.
Black and Tarry Stool
This is normal, mom! If your child is a newbie ( a few days old) and has just freshly popped out of you and been welcomed to the World then this is a normal color. It doesn’t smell quite yet because it’s not exactly poop per se. It is, but it’s not. It’s meconium which is filled with amniotic fluid, mucus, skin cells, and other stuff ingested in the womb. Around the fourth day of being alive, this poop will change to a green color that is less sticky. It will no longer look like black oil but have a dark green color. This is also normal.
Green liquid or Yellow seedy liquid Stools
Green liquid or Yellow seedy liquid stools are found in babies who are breastfed exclusively or breastfed and supplemented with formula. These stools may have you concerned because they look like the baby is having diarrhea. As long as the baby doesn’t have a fever there is no need for concern. This color and texture are 100% normal!
Peanut Butter color and texture
Peanut Butter color and texture is normal with formula only fed babies. This will be much more abundant and sticky. It can be anywhere from a dark brown to a yellow color, but it will be sticky and have a pungent odor about it.
If your babies poop is black or dark green possibly by itself or mixed with some peanut butter poop or yellow poop then this is normal as long as you are giving the baby an iron supplement of some kind. If you’re not. It’s definitely a sign you should be worried about and contact your doctor regarding this. ( We will get to why in the abnormal section)
Thicker Peanut Butter Poop
This is going to show up when the baby starts eating solid foods. It will look like the peanut butter poop from earlier but be much more compact and there should be a lot more of it! It will also be smellier and have a solid but mushy consistency that’s not hard to spot.
Undigested Food Poop
If your baby is eating solid foods, they can have weird colors to their poop like dark blue or orange. This is due to undigested foods within the babies poop and as long as it’s not a continuous issue you shouldn’t worry. If you constantly see chunks of food like carrots or weird colors in their poop, then it’s something to be concerned about. You should seek medical attention if it happens daily.
Now for the abnormal poops. The poops you have all been waiting for are coming your way…
Diarrhea is super runny like water and can be yellow, green or brown. It will usually come out of the baby’s diaper and that’s the first sign a parent realizes that their child has diarrhea. You should be concerned if this happens more than twice a day. This is a sign you need to call your doctor. You don’t want your child to become dehydrated and this usually means there is some sort of infection or allergy going on that needs to be addressed.
If your child has more than three pebbles per diaper changing, then they are constipated. The poop can even be tinged with blood due to the poop coming out too hard from the anus. If this happens it could mean a food sensitivity or they aren’t getting enough fluids. This can also happen upon starting solid foods. Either way, its recommended if you notice these signs to speak with your doctor.
If your babies poop has mucus in it or looks slimy then you should be concerned. This usually has to do with an infection of some sort. The poop shouldn’t look slimy or shiny. Call the doctor if your baby’s poop looks like this.
Black Poop without an Iron Supplement Being Given
This means there could be blood in your baby’s poop. This is a bad sign because it could mean some sort of internal bleeding or irritation. Get it checked out as soon as possible!
Blood is never a good sign. Normal stools that have blood-tinged within them could mean a dairy allergy. So be sure to get that checked out, but it’s not something to fret over too much.
Now if the poop is constipated with blood it could mean there are ears in the anus or that your child is having hemorrhoids! This should be looking at as soon as possible as it could be a sign of a much larger issue.
Diahhrea mixed with blood is never a good sign. This means a bacterial infection of some kind. And this could put your child’s life in danger. Go to the ER immediately and/or call your doctor. This could also mean food poisoning of some kind. Bacteria from food can potentially harm your child so either way get to a doctor or the hospital. Do not wait on this one.