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Baby poop colours and what they mean

From the first day of life, newborn babies undergo a sequential color change of their poop

From the first day of life, newborn babies undergo a sequential color change of their poop. As a mother, understanding this color change is important as poop color is one of the indicators of a baby’s general health.

Apart from color, noting the texture and consistency can also provide more information about the little one’s wellness. Age, diet, and health play a vital role in determining the baby’s poop color.

Poop colors

Black

During the first week of life, newborns will produce a black stool, it’s normal and is known as meconium and does not produce a smell. It appears as a thick stool, mostly, its made up of cells, bile, mucous and amniotic fluid ingested by the baby while still in the womb.

This color changes to dark green then yellowish towards the end of week 1 of life.

A black stool appearing in older babies maybe pathological, indicating possible bleeding along the digestive tract. Some types of foods and drugs like iron supplements and blueberries can change stool color to black

Consult your doctor if baby does not pass the meconium stool in the first two days of life.

Yellow

This is the normal poop color in breastfeeding babies, it will be mustard-like, loose in consistency and may smell sweetish or slightly sweet

Brown

Formula-fed babies tend to produce a brownish stool; it may appear light brownish or orange and tends to be firmer than breast milk poop.

Green

Babies can get greenish stool occasionally. This can be a normal occurrence but may also be due to; slow digestion, antibiotics, mom’s diet, change in baby’s diet, and food allergy or intolerance.

A greenish stool that is slightly streaked with mucus is normal when it happens during drooling can also indicate teething.

RED Poop

Red baby poop is always considered unhealthy and pathological, not unless your baby has fed on a red color diet.

Red streaks on baby’s poo can indicate a reaction or allergy likely due to milk protein allergy but mostly signify bleeding from the intestines/lower digestive tract or ingestion of blood from mother’s cracked, bleeding nipples.

White poop

White poop is always pathological, a chalk-white or grey poo should always be a warning sign. It mostly indicates a liver problem. It shows that your baby is not getting enough bile, a liver or gall bladder problem may cause this as poo always gets its color from bile.

Red and white poop are uncommon and mostly pathological and should always be considered as flags. Visit your doctor always when you notice these occurrences.

How many times should baby poop

Breastfed newborns often poop after every feeding about six to 10 times a day, but after three to six weeks, they typically slow down and start having bowel movements less frequently. Some breastfed babies may only have a bowel movement only once a week. This is because breast milk passes through your baby’s digestive system and is wholly absorbed, leaving very little or no solid waste.

Formula-fed babies should poop at least once a day.

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