Is your newborn's poop normal?
Your baby's pooping habits, normal stool color and straining
So, you have a new baby. That means your automatic, "I worry about poop" button is switched into active mode. It seems that you can't have a new baby and not worry about their stool. Suddenly, it's the main topic of conversation at the dinner table, in bed before you go to sleep at night -- anywhere, anytime is the appropriate time to discuss pooping habits. (Just remember, your child might be discussing your pooping habits and diaper changes around a dinner table in the future.)
So, what is normal poop?
We generally state that babies should be having wet and dirty diapers about six to eight times per day in the first week. However, there can be a lot of variability in this. Babies can poop every time they feed or just once a week and still be normal. You should worry if the baby is having hard stools or has a lot of swelling of their belly.
Normal stool color and consistency also varies. The color can be all over the place.
Also, straining and turning red and pushing with all their strength is normal. They're learning what muscles to push with to get the stool out. Imagine if you didn't know and were just guessing how to poop. It wouldn't go so well.
There are many varieties of normal stool but if you are concerned about your newborn’s poop, call your pediatrician.
Having a new baby in the house is an exciting, and generally, very happy time. It can also be a time of worry and fear. Learn more at Dr. Smith's Newborn University.
Justin Smith, M.D., is a Cook Children's pediatrician in Lewisville . View more from The Doc Smitty at his Facebook page. He attended University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School and did his pediatric training at Baylor College of Medicine. He joins Cook Children's after practicing in his hometown of Abilene for four years. He has a particular interest in development, behavior and care for children struggling with obesity. In his spare time, he enjoys playing with his 3 young children, exercising, reading and writing about parenting and pediatric health issues.