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Baby Diarrhea

Almost any mother has the ability to detect baby diarrhea. Even a blind mother can make note of changes in the odor coming from her baby’s diaper. Odor can often provide a telltale sign a baby is experiencing diarrhea or some other digestive difficulty.

Why is A Baby’s Bowel Movement So Important?

Just discovering an incidence of diarrhea in the family does not ensure you’ll be fully equipped to deal with a sick baby. A wise mother realizes baby diarrhea can deprive your child of vital fluids. A wise mother understands the importance of providing her sick baby with plenty of fluids for hydrating their little body.

Each of a sick baby’s frequent and watery bowel movements can diminish the amount of nutrients and electrolytes in his or her digestive tract. When dealing with diarrhea in your very young child, make restoration of lost body electrolytes a priority.

What to Feed a Baby with Diarrhea

Health professionals advise against giving sugary foods to any kids with diarrhea. Sugar in the digestive tract just draws more water into the intestines to break it down. This extra water in turn aggravates diarrhea.

If you consult with your pediatrician about your baby’s illness, you might want to focus on determining the underlying cause so you can try to prevent further health problems.

Examine your baby’s regular feeding schedule. If, for example, your child is less than six months old, you should probably avoid giving fruit juice to him or her. Likewise, although you may think its harmless or even “cute”, you should not give your child colas to drink. Such caffeinated, carbonated beverages also contain a host of artificial sweeteners, binders, dyes, and other unhealthful substances.

Breastfeeding is best because it provides your child with vast amounts of immunological and nutritious properties in addition to facilitating bonding and an overall sense of wellbeing. However, if you must use an artificial baby formula, rethink how you prepare each bottle before giving it to your child. Are you properly sterilizing bottles after each use? Are you mixing the formula correctly?

Sometimes, diarrhea can even occur from your baby not being able to latch on to the fake nipple of the bottle and ingesting too much air while feeding. Bear in mind—a formula-fed baby also will not have an immunity function equal to that of a breastfed baby because formula does not pass on antibodies such as is contained in mother’s milk. Parents choosing to use baby formula should therefore expect baby diarrhea as part of the trade off. However, if you would prefer a more healthful solution, try raw organic goat’s milk as a nutritious alternative as it’s the closest match for human breastmilk found in nature.

Keeping Your Baby Hydrated

You may also need to feed your sick baby a pediatric electrolyte solution, which is essentially sterilized water containing vitamins and minerals. Such solutions can be found in most drug or grocery stores under various brand names.

These fluids can return valuable electrolytes to your baby’s body, especially while he or she is suffering from repeated and watery bowel movements. Besides permitting normal brain and nervous system functioning, electrolytes help your baby’s body absorb nutrients from their food.

Watch carefully for these signs of dehydration:

  • A sinking of the baby’s soft spot
  • A marked decrease of wet diapers produced daily by your baby
  • Loss of color or “flush” of your baby’s skin
  • An absence of tears when your baby cries
  • Noticeable dryness on your baby’s lips, mouth, tongue
  • Chafing or flaking of skin in the baby’s sensitive genital or anal tissue
  • Observable dryness overall of your baby’s skin, hair, and nails

Any of the above signs indicate the diarrhea has resulted in dehydration of your child.

If the baby has started eating solid foods, you can try items known to bind with liquids in the intestines, such as bananas, steamed brown rice, applesauce, or dry whole-wheat toast.

If you prefer offering a varied diet, you can work in complex carbohydrates (organic cereal, pastas, and potatoes), lean meats (preferably fish or poultry), a little yogurt now and then, and even soft vegetables (peas, carrots, and yams). You should buy only yogurts containing live bacterial cultures as they promote efficient digestive function. A healthy digestive tract is naturally less prone to the onset of baby diarrhea.

Methods for Avoiding Baby Diarrhea

Good hand washing is probably one of the best ways to avoid future infections. You can inadvertently pass germs on to other family members, yourself, or even back to your baby if you don’t wash your hands thoroughly after every diaper change. Even the best hand washing routine might not prevent illness though. If you note your child’s diarrhea has been accompanied by fever or bloody stools, you can probably pinpoint a bacterial infection. Contact your pediatrician if the diarrhea does not abate after a day or two or if your child displays noticeable symptoms of dehydration or other severe signs of illness.

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