by Natalie Coverly
I have a 5 week old baby who hasn’t had a pooh in 4 days; she is cramping and grunting a great deal and I have been breastfeeding. I know they say that breast fed babies can go for a few days without passing stools but she looks very uncomfortable. I have tried the bicycle riding with her legs and also massaging her tummy but nothing is working. She really isn’t comfortable as she has previously been.
Baby Help Line:
Helping A Newborn, Breastfed Baby To Poop Or Not
You are well-informed – at 5 weeks, a breastfed baby may very well go for a few days without pooping. 6 weeks is a growth spurts, so your daughter is very likely to digest all the milk she gets.
But just because it is normal, it does not mean that it is comfortable. Many newborn babies strain and are gassy even if they do not poop. In my experience, they do not stop producing gas just because they do not poop, and I guess if there are no stools to push out the gas, it can build up and make the young infant very uncomfortable.
It is a great thing that you are trying massage. It can help. A warm bath, if your baby enjoys it may help too. Being carried in an upright position in a baby carrier or on mom’s or dad’s arm belly down can also help.
Some babies can release gas more easily if you push their knees gently towards their tummy and move the knees slowly to the left and right. That’s something I used to do with my newborn babies at around 5 am for many nights – they always seemed to build up gas at night and then couldn’t sleep comfortably in the early morning hours.
What not to do is to start experimenting with laxatives, suppositories, q-tips, or juices. You breastfed baby does not need any of this, since she is not constipated. Her digestive system needs to mature, and it is hard work for a young lady.
You can also take a look at which foods that you eat that may cause gas in your daughter here.
I hope this helps,
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