Can switching formula cause constipation?

can changing formula cause constipationThe absence of poop is always a big concern for most moms. You get so worried and worked up all about this. And, the truth is, during this time, a lot of questions swim through your mind, one of which is “can switching formulas cause constipation?”

At infanlist we support inquisitiveness. It is our belief that you can only get answers when you ask questions. You don’t just sit out there and watch. In fact, the bond between a mom and her child is so great that you definitely can’t do it without asking questions.

So, not to digress from the subject, can changing your infant formula cause constipation? One way to find answers is to continue reading through. We have written this article to provide you with detailed information about the subject. Additionally, it will also help you narrow down the likely cause of your baby’s constipation.

Infant constipation

Studies show that constipation is very common in infants less than a year. And, as we have earlier stated, this is a big concern, especially for moms who have their babies in this category.

Sometimes, your baby might not have constipation. This is because on a normal day babies sometimes have an irregular bowel movement.

Therefore, the best thing to do in this situation is to give your baby some time to set a proper schedule for his or her own bowel movement. But, if your baby shows most of the following symptoms, he or she may be constipated.

Symptoms of constipation

  • The baby does not poop at least once every 5-10 days
  • Have a swollen belly with gas
  • Baby strains to have a normal bowel movement
  • Difficult to pass and infrequent stool
  • Baby’s stool is bloody and black

Can switching formula cause constipation?

If your baby is suffering from constipation, one of the wisest things to do is to narrow down the causes. For babies who are on an all-liquid diet, having constipation is very rare. But babies on infant formula are much likely to have constipation. This is because the possibility of formula firming your baby’s poop is higher than breast milk.

Now, we know that formula-fed babies are more at risk of being constipated to breastfeed babies. The question is, can switching formulas cause constipation?

The answer is yes! We found out that changing formula can cause stool inconsistency in your baby—It can make his or her stool loose or firm. This is mainly because formulas are more thickened than themselves. But with time your baby’s stomach adapts to this change.

Before switching your baby’s formula, it is important that you seek the counsel of a pediatrician. In addition, be sure to rule out other causes of constipation before switching.

Other Likely causes of Constipation:

  • Insufficient fluid:

Water aids digestion, and if your baby is not getting enough fluid from the formula, you can’t take away the possibility of constipation.

Therefore, if your baby has started taking solids, you can offer him or her some water. Additionally, if you live in a warm climate, you might need to offer your baby water at an early stage.

  • Transition into taking solid food:

The possibility of your baby getting constipated is very high when switching from breast milk to solid, or breast milk to formula.

This is because, at this stage, your baby’s system is not used to digesting any other thing asides from breast milk. Therefore, ensure you transition your baby gradually so that he or she can adapt.

  • Medications:

As surprising as this might be, the fact is, some major medications given to your baby can cause constipation. This includes iron supplements, Aluminum-containing antacids, and Anti-biotic.


Home Remedies for constipation

As we have earlier stated, it is possible for your baby to go quite a while without bowel movements. However, if your baby is constipated, you may use any of the following home remedies as a first-line treatment.

  • Hydration:

Just as you should already know that insufficient fluid can cause constipation, the solution to this problem is to get your baby hydrated.

Pediatricians advise that you add a small amount of water to your baby’s diet if he or she is well over 2-4 months and is constipated.

  • Give your baby a warm birth:

A warm bath will help to relax your baby’s abdominal muscles. This will help to stop your baby from straining hard, and it will also help him or her relieve the resulting pain from constipation.

  • Exercise:

As with adults with constipation. Exercise can help your baby’s bowel function and also relieve his or her constipation.

To exercise your baby, if he or she is not yet walking or crawling, gently move his or her leg up and down to mimic riding on a bicycle pedal.

  • Massage:

A gentle massage around your baby’s lower abdomen and stomach may work the magic. You can do this several times a day till your baby has a bowel movement.


When to contact a doctor:

If your baby is still not having a bowel movement, and the symptoms are still persistent, don’t hesitate to consult a pediatrician.

Although most times constipation will clear off after trying one or two of the home remedies. But if it doesn’t, please contact your doctor.


Conclusion: Can switching formula cause constipation?

Babies are very fragile, they require extra care and attention when dealing with them. Dietary changes can have a significant change on your baby.

Therefore, it is important that you seek the expertise of a pediatrician before making any decision concerning your baby’s diet. This helps you ensure that you are doing the right thing.

In some specific situations, your pediatrician might suggest a formula change. This might be for several reasons. It could be because he or she discovers your baby has a milk allergy or acid reflux. In this situation, your pediatrician will advise you on what to do. This we believe is better than switching formulas from time to time.

Read also: How to wean my baby from breastfeeding

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