Inspissated Faeces after Solids
Category:
Miscellaneous
Age:
5 mo.
Inspissated Faeces after Solids
Hi

My son is five months old and has just started on solids, however, he has also started suffering from inspissated faeces. A couple of days ago he passed an entire dry long stool. He pushes a lot but does not seem upset. For the past week or so the stools have been very hard (like plasticine), with bowel movements every second day.

I breastfeed him as often as he likes. In the morning he eats some fruit purée (apple/banana or prune), in the evening he eats potato purée with carrots or millet cereal. We have skipped the rice cereal, as I have read that rice does not have a good effect on the stomach.

Is there anything else I can do to help him get his bowels moved. I realize that his stomach needs time to adjust to the new food, but I feel sorry for him when his stools are too hard.


Helen Hansen
Answer

Hi

I am afraid that it is often the case for babies, when they start on solids, as their bowels need to adjust to the more solid food, that they suffer from inspissated faeces.

The best you can do is to variate his food intake, i.e. see to it that he gets cereal and vegetable purée, and supplement with prune purée and other kinds of fruit purée. Try to avoid banana which is constipating.

It is a good idea to give him enough fluids, as the fluids help soften the stools in the bowels, to be served together with his food. Always remember to offer him a cup of water together with his solids, and between meals you can also offer him a breast feed as often as possible. Pay attention to the fact that he does not get too large portions of cereal and purée in order to leave space in his stomach for a breast feed. In other word, offer him small frequent meals in order to ensure enough space in the stomach for fluids.

You should also help him be physically active, i.e. help him roll from side to side, play with him, make cycling movements with his legs etc. Physical activity is generally important to stimulate the bowel movements.

Should none of the above advices have any effect, it is necessary to offer him lactulose, which you can buy over-the-counter at the pharmacy. The required quantity of lactulose is 1 ml per kilo body weight, and should your son weigh 7 kg, I recommend that you offer him lactulose twice a day - give him 3 1/2 ml at morning and night and see how he reacts. Regulate the quantity of lactulose according to how his stomach reacts.

Bowel movements every second day is quite normal, as long as the baby is thriving and does not feel any stomach pain or suffer from constipation, which may make him stop eating. It is important to keep his bowels active.

I hope this is helpful:o)

Kind regards,

Helen Hansen