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Constipation

The causes of frequent solid bowel movements and how to prevent them

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A significant indicator of health can be the frequency and consistency of bowel movements. However, having more bowel movements than normal, as a standalone symptom, is not a cause for concern.

Many individuals associate diarrhea, which involves loose or watery stools, with frequent bowel movements. A wide variety of variables could, however, cause frequent solid bowel movements. These variables include the diet of a person, allergies to food, and underlying health conditions.

In this article, we examine how often bowel movements in individuals with a good health status are likely to occur. The causes and treatment of frequent solid bowel movements are also covered and we explain when to see a doctor.

How often is frequent?

Frequent bowel movement

The frequency and consistency of bowel movements may be significant indicators of the health of an individual.

Health experts do not, however, cite a particular number of bowel movements as normal or healthy.

Most individuals have one to three bowel movements a day, the general standard. Research suggests, however, that it’s still healthy to have three bowel movements a week.

Constipation may be indicated by having less than three bowel movements in a week, especially if the stools are difficult and difficult to pass through.

In contrast, three or more watery bowel movements in a day may mean that there is diarrhea in an individual.

These are general standards and will not apply to everyone. If they notice any significant or persistent changes in their toilet habits, it is important that individuals consider what is typical for them and take action.

Causes

Research shows that frequent bowel movements can be caused by a broad variety of variables:

  • Infections of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract: Infections, which may be due to viruses, bacteria, or parasites, can frequently cause short-term bowel problems. One study found that many children with frequent nondiarrheal bowel movements have a non-polio enterovirus (NPEV).
  • Food allergies: These cause the immune system to overreact to certain foods, mistakenly treating them as pathogens. About 3–4% of adults in Westernized countries have food allergies, which can be serious if they affect a person’s ability to breathe.
  • Caffeine: Due to the laxative effect of caffeine, the International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders say that more than two or three cups of coffee or tea a day can cause diarrhea.
  • Celiac disease: This disease affects about 1 in every 100 people worldwide. People with celiac disease experience a full immune system response when they eat wheat, barley, or rye. This response can affect a person’s bowel movements and damage their small intestine.
  • Lactose intolerance: This condition affects up to 70% of the world’s population. People with this condition cannot consume dairy products without having intestinal problems.
  • Exercise: Exercise is healthful overall, but some individuals, such as long-distance runners, may notice powerful urges to move their bowels when working out. Some may even experience diarrhea. Experts suggest that this effect is due to reduced blood flow to the colon.
  • Gall bladder problems: Conditions such as Habba syndrome indicate a link between poor gall bladder function and frequent bowel movements.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): The most common form of functional diarrhea, IBS can also cause constipation. Some people with IBS may experience both symptoms.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease are two forms of this immune system disorder, which causes chronic inflammation of the GI tract and can lead to long-term damage.
  • Medications or drug abuse: Many medications can cause digestive problems, including aspirinnonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), antibiotics, and blood pressure medications.
  • Cancer: Changes in bowel habits can be a sign of colon cancer, particularly if they occur along with other symptoms, such as anemia, unintentional weight loss, fatigue, blood in the stool, and bleeding from the anus.

Treatments

Frequent bowel movements that are not diarrhea often respond well to self-care, such as the use of medications for symptom relief over-the-counter (OTC).

Recommendations for treatment of IBS, a common cause of frequent bowel movements, include:

  • adjusting the diet to support healthy digestion
  • engaging in regular physical activity
  • taking steps to manage stress, such as practicing mindfulness or yoga
  • treating symptoms of constipation, diarrhea, or stomach pain with OTC or prescription medications, such as loperamide, laxatives, or antispasmodics.

When to see a doctor

When diarrhea lasts more than 2 days, experts recommend seeing a doctor.

Frequent solid bowel movements may not present the same risk of dehydration as diarrhea. A person who frequently passes solid stools should, however, see a doctor if they are:

  • develop a fever
  • notice blood in their stool
  • start vomiting or feeling nauseated
  • experience painful stomach cramps
  • cannot control their bowel movements

Prevention     

Sometimes, adhering to a healthy lifestyle can help individuals avoid frequent solid bowel movements. Dietary practices that might be especially helpful include:

  • adding foods high in fiber, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, to the diet gradually
  • limiting the intake of gluten and products containing gluten
  • seeking a doctor’s advice on supplementing the diet with probiotics to increase the “good” bacteria in the gut

Other practices that may help maintain a healthy frequency of bowel movements include:

  • exercising regularly
  • getting enough sleep
  • managing stress with relaxation techniques, mindfulness, and biofeedback
  • mental health therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and gut-directed hypnotherapy

Summary

Regarding frequent solid bowel movements, the main thing to consider is whether this pattern represents a change for the individual.

Most of the time, short-term responses to a specific food, a passing virus, or too much coffee are changes in bowel habits, and a person can resolve them with self-care.

It may help to maintain the regularity of bowel movements by adopting a healthy lifestyle, following a well-balanced diet, and learning to manage stress.

Body Aches

How to practice constipation-relieving massage techniques

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Massage for constipation relief can be done at home without any special equipment. It entails applying moderate pressure to the muscles and organs involved in waste elimination.

In the United States, around 16 out of every 100 adults suffer from constipation. While there is no definitive evidence that massage helps with constipation, there is some evidence that it does.

Massage is generally safe and can bring relief and enhance overall well-being, regardless of whether it helps with constipation, so it’s worth a shot.

This article looks at which massage techniques can help with constipation, as well as how to use them.

When to consult a physician

If constipation and associated symptoms are interfering with a person’s everyday life or if they have worries about the condition, they should seek medical help.

If you have constipation and any of the following people, you should see a doctor right away.

  • fever
  • lower back pain
  • rectal bleeding or blood in the stool
  • inability to pass gas
  • unexplained weight loss
  • abdominal pain
  • vomiting

Massage for constipation

Massage for constipation

Constipation may be relieved by abdominal massage. Massage therapy has been shown to aid with this condition in small studies. The effects of various types of massage on constipation relief are listed below.

Abdominal massage for constipation relief

According to certain studies, belly massage may aid in the relief of constipation symptoms. Despite the fact that the majority of studies on the subject are tiny, the evidence is generally favourable.

A gadget that simulates manual abdominal massaging is useful in treating slow-transit constipation, according to a 2020 trial involving 37 participants. When the colon does not move waste through the large intestine quickly enough, this occurs.

Another study from 2020 contrasted Thai traditional massage on the court with Senokot, a laxative. Only the fingers, thumbs, and palms are used in this style of Thai massage. The study randomly assigned 40 people with constipation to one of two groups: regular Thai massage or laxatives. Constipation relief, an increase in bowel movements, and complete emptying of the intestines were experienced by both the Thai massage and laxative groups. Massage was found to be a more effective technique of alleviating constipation than laxatives, resulting in more solid, regular feces.

Abdominal massage effectively stimulates bowel movements, according to a 2015 study involving 29 people with constipation. According to the study, a type of massage termed tensegrity massage may be more efficient than traditional abdominal massage at alleviating constipation.

The effects of abdominal massage on 191 people with multiple sclerosis who had constipation and fecal incontinence were studied in a 2018 study. The researchers discovered that abdominal massage improved bowel movement frequency and emptying of the bowels slightly. Participants also stated that they felt better.

How to Massage Your Abdominals

People can try the abdominal massage described in a 2011 Nursing Times review and reproduced by the National Health Service in the United Kingdom to assist reduce constipation. Stroking, effleurage, kneading, and vibrating are the four types of movement. Stool passage through the colon and into the rectum is aided by these strokes.

The individual should lie down with a pillow between his or her knees. Apply massage oil to the abdomen and perform the following steps:

  1. Stroke: Using a flat hand, stroke a straight line from the base of the abdomen (between the hips) up to the rib cage. Rep 10 times more.
  2. Stroke: Place both hands at the small of the back, one on each side. Smooth your hands over both hips, down to the pelvis and groin — the point where the thigh bone meets the pelvic. Rep 10 times more.
  3. Effleurage: With the right hand, make a fist and lay it over the right crotch. Slide the fist up the belly, across the left rib cage, and down the left side of the abdomen. An upside-down “U” is the motion. Slowly repeat for around 10 times or 2 minutes. For further pressure, the left hand might be placed on top of the fist.
  4. Kneading: Make a fist and place it right below the rib cage on the upper left abdomen. This is a slow-moving process: While moving down the left wall of the abdomen, rotate the wrist roughly 10 times. Rep 10 times more. On the other side, repeat the kneading massage but work from the bottom (right lower groin) to the top.
  5. Effleurage: Step 3 should be repeated for roughly 2 minutes.
  6. Vibrations: Place both palms over the center of the abdomen, one hand over the other. While pressing down on the abdomen, make a shaking motion with your hands. Vibrations can aid with gas relief.

People should try to do the massage when they normally have a bowel movement, such as first thing in the morning or when they are able to sit or lie down. This may assist in retraining the body to naturally move stools. According to a synopsis of the technique in the Nursing Times article, people may notice a change within 4 weeks of applying this abdominal massage.

Colon massage for constipation

Massage therapists claim colon massage is a deep abdominal method that stimulates the organs to release gas and pressure, according to anecdotal sources.

According to a 2020 study, daily colon massage can help relieve persistent constipation. The researchers investigated the benefits of a massage apparatus that mimicked the effects of a manual colon massage.

Over the course of 9 weeks, 92 people with persistent constipation were followed. For four weeks, each participant utilized the colon massage device for 20 minutes every day.

There was a considerable increase in bowel movements, increased stool consistency, and decreased use of laxatives and suppositories during the therapy period.

The symptoms of constipation, such as bloating, abdominal pain, and incomplete bowel movements, improved after treatment. A significant improvement in quality of life and overall satisfaction was also noted by participants.

How to perform colon massage

People can give themselves the following massage 20 minutes before they expect to have a bowel movement. Make a sweeping stroke with a flat hand and moderate pressure. The massage will take about 5–7 minutes to finish and will follow the colon’s path:

  • Lie flat on your back on the floor.
  • Start at the front of the right hip bone on the lower right side of the abdomen and work your way up to underneath the right side of the rib cage.
  • Stroke across the lower abdomen from right to left, underneath the rib cage, then down to the lower left side, finishing with an inward stroke toward the centre.
  • Five to seven times, repeat this square-like motion.
  • Place the hand on the lower right side of the abdomen, push down with moderate pressure, then scoop the hand three to five times in an upward C-shaped stroke.
  • Three to five times in each position, repeat the same stroke below the right-hand rib cage, the left-hand rib cage, the lower left side of the abdomen, and the lower center abdomen.

What is constipation?

Constipation is a condition in which a person has difficulty passing stools. Symptoms vary from person to person, but they may include:

  • pain when passing a stool
  • feeling that not all stools have passed
  • fewer than three bowel movements in 1 week
  • hard or lumpy stools

Other types of massage for constipation

Constipation can also be relieved by massaging other parts of the body. Some of these strategies are included below, along with any supporting evidence.

Massage of the feet

Researchers studied the effects of foot reflexology massage on constipation among 60 elderly persons in a 2020 study.

Reflexology is a massage technique that stimulates the nervous system by stimulating reflex sites in the body, which then sends messages to glands and organs in other parts of the body. Reflexology can help to balance systems by stimulating or calming specific parts of the body.

The participants were split into two groups: one received reflexology treatment and the other received a foot massage without pressure. For one month, participants received a 30-minute massage three times a week. Researchers discovered that reflexology improved bowel evacuation and reduced the severity of constipation.

How to perform a foot massage

Constipation can be relieved by contacting a reflexologist for a foot massage. Anecdotal sources offer the following strategy for practicing foot reflexology at home:

  • Sit in a comfortable position so you can easily reach your feet.
  • Massage the feet with your hands using squeezing, kneading, or stroking strokes using an absorbing body lotion or oil.
    Hold the ankle with one foot crossed over the opposing knee.
  • One hand’s thumb should be placed on the sole.
  • Start at the heel and work your way to each toe, using even pressure with a forward, caterpillar-like motion.
  • People can also utilize a reflexology chart to figure out which pressure points correspond to which parts of the body, and then press on each point with their thumb. Points on the soles of each foot, for example, correlate to distinct parts of the colon.
  • Finish by lightly rubbing your fingertips over and across the entire foot a few times.
  • Reverse the procedure for the other foot.

Additional constipation-relieving suggestions

There are various alternative home remedies for constipation that can be used in addition to or instead of massage therapy, including:

  1. eating more fiber or taking a fiber supplement
  2. trying osmotic laxatives that help soften stools
  3. staying well hydrated
  4. exercising more frequently
  5. keeping a regular schedule of passing a stool

If constipation clears up after a few weeks of attempting home cures, massage, or dietary modifications, a person may not require medical help.

More home cures for constipation can be found here.

Outlook

Constipation is a frequent problem that can be treated well with self-care, dietary changes, and over-the-counter osmotic laxatives.

Massage techniques may aid in constipation relief, however they may not be effective for everyone. If symptoms persist, a person should consult a doctor about treatment options.

Conclusion

Massage treatment may be able to assist a person suffering from constipation in finding relief. Small trials have been done thus far, which may not indicate how beneficial the therapy is in a wider population.

People who want to try massage therapy for constipation can do so safely at home or seek the advice of a massage therapist. People can speak with a doctor about the best ways to avoid chronic constipation and its repercussions.

Sources:

  • https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11606-014-3084-6
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/massage-for-constipation
  • https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/2515690X20960644
  • https://brooksrehab.org/blog/video-colon-massage-to-improve-bowel-mobility/
  • https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10620-020-06626-3
  • https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/constipation/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4624523/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7231874/
  • https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/laxatives/#Types
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5178368/
  • https://www.journalslibrary.nihr.ac.uk/hta/hta22580#/full-report
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7671882/
  • https://bmccomplementmedtherapies.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12906-016-1282-y
  • https://www.wchc.nhs.uk/content/uploads/2019/12/Self-abdominal-massage.pdf

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Constipation

Milk of magnesia: Things to know

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Constipation is treated with milk of magnesia, which is a common and efficient remedy. It is available without a prescription from drug shops.

This page discusses what milk of magnesia is, how to use it, which conditions it can cure, and the most prevalent negative effects.

What is milk of magnesia?

Magnesium hydroxide, often known as milk of magnesia, can be used as an antacid or a saline laxative.

This kind of laxative aids stool loosening by pulling moisture into the colon.

A person can buy milk of magnesia over the counter (OTC) without a prescription, but if they have repeated spells of constipation, they should consult their doctor.

Unless their doctor advises it, parents and guardians should avoid providing milk of magnesia to children under the age of six.

Uses and effects

Magnesia milk is used for a variety of purposes, including:

The original version of milk of magnesia aids in bowel movement production in 30 minutes to 6 hours.

Milk of magnesia may aid with illnesses including sunburn and acne, in addition to constipation and acid reduction, while scientific data is limited.

Magnesium milk for sunburn

Some people claim that putting a thin coating of milk of magnesia topically to a sunburn can assist to relieve the discomfort and burning.

Though this may help for some people, there are no studies or empirical data to back up its usage in the treatment of sunburn.

A person seeking sunburn treatment should consult their physician. Other over-the-counter medicines, such as aloe vera, may be more effective.

Magnesium milk for acne

Some people feel that magnesia milk might aid with acne treatment. The belief is based on the drug’s capability to help break up surface oils.

The sole study on its usage for acne was published in 1975. According to the study, using milk of magnesia in combination with orally ingesting 250 mg of tetracycline and bathing two times daily with a nonfat soap helped clean up acne pustules and reduce inflammation.

There have been no more research on the use of using milk of magnesia topically or eating it orally to cure acne. Alternative acne treatment options should be discussed with a doctor.

Types

Milk of magnesia can be purchased as a pill or a liquid. When taking a pill, it is common to chew the tablet before swallowing it.

Milk of magnesia is available in two strengths: ordinary and concentrated. Children under the age of 12 should not be given the concentrated liquid.

Different people of milk of magnesia may be purchased at pharmacy shops or online.

Dosage

People should not take any more medication than their doctor or the package instructions suggest.

Though dosages vary, a person should not take more than the suggested dose in a 24-hour period.

A person can drink liquid magnesia milk by mixing it with milk or water. Before measuring a dosage, give the bottle a good shake. The dose is determined by the reason for the medication’s use as well as the patient’s age.

The dosages for milk of magnesia based on use and age are described in the sections below.

Milk of magnesia for constipation

When taking milk of magnesia, people of legal drinking age should drink a full glass (8 ounces) of water with each dose. To ensure accuracy, use the 15-milliliter (ml) dosage cup or spoon supplied. It’s better to take the prescription before going to bed.

The dose in milliliters changes based on a person’s age when using the original type of milk of magnesia for constipation:

  • Adults can take 30–60 ml.
  • Children ages 6–11 can take 15–30 ml.
  • Ask a doctor before giving this medication to children under 6 years old.

The dose for the concentrated form of milk of magnesia is lower:

  • Adults can take 15–30 ml.
  • Ask a doctor before giving this medication to children under 12 years old.

Chewable pills are also available for children. Each dosage should be accompanied with a full glass of liquid. Depending on your age, you’ll need to take a different dose:

  • Children ages 6–12 can take 3–6 tablets per day.
  • Children ages 2–6 can take 1–3 tablets per day.
  • Ask a doctor before giving this medication to children under 2 years old.

Milk of magnesia should not be used as a laxative for more than 7 days in a row. Anyone who is still in need of a laxative or is experiencing prolonged stomach pain should consult a physician.

Constipation is generally relieved within 6 hours of drinking milk of magnesia. If a person does not have a bowel movement after taking milk of magnesia, they should discontinue use and consult a physician.

In some circumstances, constipation may be caused by an underlying condition that needs more medical attention.

Milk of magnesia for other digestive issues

People can take various types of milk of magnesia to treat heartburn and acid indigestion in addition to constipation alleviation.

Adults should drink 5–15 ml of water at a time and repeat up to four times per day as needed. They should not drink more than 60 milliliters of water in a 24-hour period.

When used as an antacid, milk of magnesia may also have a laxative effect. Milk of magnesia should not be used as an antacid for more than 14 days in a row.

Before using milk of magnesia to address other digestive difficulties in children under the age of 12, see a doctor.

Adverse effects

The majority of people who consume milk of magnesia have no negative side effects.

The following are the most prevalent milk of magnesia adverse effects:

  • vomiting
  • skin flushing
  • drowsiness
  • diarrhea
  • stomach cramps
  • nausea

More significant adverse effects are also possible with magnesia milk. Stop taking the drug and seek medical help if you encounter any of the following people:

  • severe nausea or vomiting
  • lightheadedness
  • rectal bleeding
  • slow heartbeat
  • no bowel movement after taking it

If a person consumes more milk of magnesia than suggested or for a longer period of time, serious side effects are more likely to develop.

Risks

To avoid getting dehydrated, people who are taking this medicine should drink lots of water. If someone gets diarrhea after taking milk of magnesia, they should not take it again.

If someone takes too much milk of magnesia, they should seek medical help right away. An overdose can cause the following symptoms:

  • mood change
  • little or no urination
  • severe diarrhea
  • slow or irregular heartbeat
  • muscle weakness

Some people are allergic to magnesia milk. The following are symptoms of an allergic response that require medical attention:

  • swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • difficulty breathing
  • hives

Milk of magnesia should be avoided by people who have renal problems. The medicine should also be avoided by the following people:

  • people who experience sudden bowel changes that last longer than 14 days
  • people with symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, or stomach pain
  • people on a magnesium-restricted diet

Pregnancy and nursing

Magnesium may be able to get through the placenta and into the fetus’s body. However, due to a lack of evidence, experts are unsure if milk of magnesia is safe to use during pregnancy.

Small levels of magnesium may also find their way into breast milk, but experts are unsure of its safety.

As a result, it is generally recommended to avoid taking milk of magnesia when pregnant or breastfeeding, or to see a doctor before doing so.

Interactions

Milk of magnesia interacts with a wide range of drugs, affecting their effectiveness. Prescription and over-the-counter drugs, as well as vitamins and supplements, are among them.

Milk of magnesia can prevent tablets from being effectively absorbed because of how it affects the fluid in the gut.

As a result, if you routinely use other drugs, such as OTC medications, vitamins, or prescription prescriptions, you should see your doctor before using milk of magnesia.

Conclusion

Milk of magnesia is a well-known and efficient laxative for treating constipation in the short term.

For constipation, people should not take milk of magnesia for more than 7 days at a time, and for other digestive difficulties, they should not use it for more than 14 days at a time.

Continuous symptoms may indicate a more significant gut health concern, so if the problem persists, a person should see a doctor.

Milk of magnesia acts by pulling water from the surrounding tissue into the intestine. This means it can prevent the body from absorbing a variety of other medications, such as prescription medications, supplements, and vitamins.

Before consuming milk of magnesia, anyone taking medicine for a health condition should see a doctor.

Sources:

  • https://www.pedia-lax.com/sites/pedialax/files/2020-04/chewable.pdf
  • https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/Milk-of-magnesia
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323763
  • https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=0a80bfdc-2657-50f8-e054-00144ff8d46c
  • https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=0a57bb45-d4f7-443b-e054-00144ff8d46c
  • https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamadermatology/article-abstract/534756

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Blood / Hematology

Blood in my baby’s stool: The possible causes and when to see a doctor

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During infancy, many newborns will have blood in their stool at least once. Blood streaks in a baby’s stool can be caused by straining to poop, tiny anal fissures, and other minor problems.

Bloody stool can also be caused by more serious conditions, such as intestinal hemorrhage. While caregivers should not be concerned, it is advisable to take the child to the doctor for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Causes

Constipation in infant
Blood in a baby’s stool might be due to constipation.

It is not always the case that a newborn’s stool is red or black in color, indicating that the infant is passing blood.

Medication or diet

Red streaks or chunks in a baby’s stool can be caused by certain meals, such as tomatoes or beets, or food colorings. As a result, caregivers should pay particular attention to the baby’s recent food intake.

Dark or red stools are also a side effect of several drugs. Caregivers should think about if the infant has taken any drugs that could influence his or her stool.

A doctor can also assist identify whether the discolouration is caused by diet or medicine. In this instance, no therapies are required.

If the stool is stained with red or dark hues owing to blood, there are various probable explanations. The following are the most typical causes:

Breastmilk

Blood can sometimes be found in breastmilk. This happens a lot when someone is nursing and their nipples are cracked or injured. The infant may ingest some blood during a feed if this happens. This might result in faint blood streaks in the baby’s stool or a reddish-colored stool as a whole.

Blood swallowed by an infant while nursing is not harmful. If the person who is nursing has HIV or AIDS, they should talk to their doctor about the hazards of breastfeeding and blood in breastmilk.

People should address any injury to the nipple if blood is seen in breastmilk, because persistent nipple damage can impair breastfeeding and cause infections. Working with a lactation consultant to alter the latch and heal the afflicted region may be an option for the individual nursing.

Constipation

Some newborns have very difficult or large bowel movements, or they go for lengthy periods of time without having one. Constipated babies may strain to poop. Because the poop exiting the body generates microscopic rips in the anus, this might result in stools with streaks or specks of blood on the outside. This is referred to as an anal fissure by doctors.

Anal fissures usually heal on their own. They can, however, get infected in rare situations because they cause an open wound in a region with a lot of bacteria.

To relieve the discomfort, a doctor may prescribe an ointment or cream. To avoid constipation, a baby’s food may need to be changed.

Allergies and sensitivities to foods

Small streaks or specks of blood may appear in the stool of babies with food sensitivities or allergies, most often to cow’s milk. Within the first several weeks of life, this happened. If caretakers see blood-tinged feces on a regular basis, they should see a doctor.

Breastmilk or formula can cause allergic reactions in babies with allergies or sensitivities. A doctor may recommend a variety of tests to determine whether or not you have an allergy. They may also recommend dietary or formula adjustments for the nursing mother.

Diarrhea

A bacterial infection, such as salmonella or E. coli, can cause bloody diarrhea. While these conditions usually go away on their own, they can induce dehydration in newborns, which can be fatal. As a result, if a newborn has diarrhea, it is essential for caretakers to consult a doctor.

Fever, irritability, and feeding difficulties are some of the other indications of an infection.

Bloody diarrhea in newborns necessitates medical attention even if they have no other symptoms.

Upper gastrointestinal bleeding

Dark blood in the stool or black stools might indicate that the baby’s upper gastrointestinal system is bleeding, such as their stomach, esophagus, throat, or even nose.

This can develop as a result of a severe injury, such as choking. Upper GI bleeding can also develop as a result of a serious infection or illness.

Upper GI bleeding is a medical emergency, and the infant should be sent to the doctor as soon as possible.

Infections

Blood in the stool is a symptom of several illnesses. When a baby has an illness, they may get diarrhea.

Necrotizing enterocolitis is one of the most serious disorders. Preterm newborns and babies with significant health problems are more likely to get this illness. Caregivers may notice the baby’s stomach is enlarged or that he or she refuses to eat.

Necrotizing enterocolitis is a life-threatening condition. As a result, all babies who pass a bloody stool or have other risk indicators should be examined by a doctor.

Poop color chart

The graphic below explains what varied feces colors in newborns signify, including red or bloody stool. Blood may show in the stool as red streaks or dark flecks. It may also turn the entire stool a deep red color, or even black.

color of baby poop

Treatment

Not all bloody stools require medical attention. Anal fissures and mild constipation usually go away on their own.

However, because newborns are more susceptible to some infections, a doctor would most likely try to figure out what’s wrong and treat it.

The best course of action is determined by the underlying reason. It might include the following:

  • Pain treatment for anal fissures: A doctor may recommend sitz baths or creams.
  • Surgery: A blockage in the intestines that causes bleeding could require surgery.
  • Antibiotics: A doctor may prescribe antibiotics for certain infections or, rarely, to treat an infected fissure.
  • Fluids: If a baby’s diarrhea causes dehydration, a doctor may prescribe intravenous (IV) fluids or electrolyte drinks.
  • Diet changes: Constipation in older babies may be alleviated by eating more fiber. Younger babies may require a change in formula or extra breastmilk. It is sometimes necessary for a nursing mother to change her diet.

Conclusion

Blood in the stool of a newborn might suggest a temporary problem, such as constipation. It can, however, indicate a life-threatening medical disease like necrotizing enterocolitis.

Caregivers may find it difficult to detect the problem at home, so it’s essential to get expert help.

The majority of disorders that result in bloody stools are easily treated. Even if there is a major underlying problem, seeking medical help as soon as possible enhances the chances of a positive outcome and may even save the baby’s life.

Sources

  • https://pedsinreview.aappublications.org/content/37/8/313
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/blood-in-baby-stool
  • https://www.thewellproject.org/hiv-information/can-i-breastfeed-while-living-hiv-overview-infant-feeding-options
  • https://www.llli.org/breastfeeding-info/color-of-milk/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5360665/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5825861/
  • https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/nec/conditioninfo/symptoms
  • https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/johns-hopkins-childrens-center/what-we-treat/specialties/gastroenterology-hepatology-nutrition/stool-color-overview.html

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