Becoming a mom catapulted me into adulthood!
While each moment has been worth it – Everything does change; like love at first sight, the 180 degree shift in mind space and how suddenly baby poop becomes a major topic of discussion.
I had heard constipation was a problem amongst toddlers, but didn’t quite realize how bad it could get, until my son Ahaan went through it. From experts advice to foods – I had tried it all.
He was exclusively breast fed for the first 9 months, then on Nan for the following 3, post which I switched him to cow’s milk (full cream milk). This was my biggest mistake; I didn’t move him to skimmed milk. There is a one in ten chance that infants can suffer from constipation as a result of this shift, and my baby boy was that one kid.
His system didn’t adjust to the change, and at the age of 1+, he was bleeding from his anus. My heart bled as he would pass out from the pain, and consequently developed a phobia of sitting on an exersaucer, leave alone the toilet seat.
A lot of sleepless nights, many tears and numerous paediatric visits taught me:
Consider the ABCs – or apple puree, bananas, and cereals. Too much of any of these, especially cereal, could cause constipation in your baby. Also, keep an eye on dairy products that are popular first foods for babies, such as cheese and yogurt. Low-fibre foods can bind babies’ systems as well. These include white rice, white bread, and pasta.
When baby’s poop become more infrequent, harder, or more difficult to pass, try these foods to “soften” it:
- Fiber – Anything containing bran, known for its high-fibre content, should help loosen up your baby’s stool. Think fibre-rich cereals, whole-wheat pasta, and brown rice.
- P fruit – Pears, Plums, Papaya,Peaches and Prunes. Their juice counterparts could also do the trick. We love pear juice; it works really well and babies love it.
- B vegetables – Broccoli, Beans, and Banana.
- Magic Formula – Miralax is odourless and tasteless, mixing it with anything non-dairy and non-carbonated is magic.
- Water – Sometimes the system just needs a good flushing out to get working again. I ensured I tracked his water intake every hour.
- Exercise – Get those little legs working with some bicycle motions. Support on the floor or a step stool. Exercise has been shown to improve colon muscle movement.
It did take me six years to overcome this hurdle, but today I’ve learnt so much about motherhood and definitely have a happy and toilet-trained 6 year old.
- Patience is the key to everything. Sometimes that means you fake it.
- This is a good time to practice that Lamaze breathing that did nothing for you during labour.
- You will discover that the small everyday events, the quiet moments, the cuddles in bed while reading, those matter more than the big things.
- You will learn to be a Mother by being a mother.
- Sure, reading books and magazines can help you formulate ideas and strategies for how to be a more effective parent, but at the end of the day you are the expert of your own children.