The first bowel movement of the baby is important. It will give you an indication that the baby’s systems are functioning well. The baby can sometimes pass bowels while still in your womb. This is called meconium, and is extremely dangerous. The process of delivery needs to hastened and the baby must be brought out immediately. If you are int he process of normal delivery, you may need to have a cesarean section instead.
It is most likely that your baby will pass it’s first stool in the hospital itself. This will be sticky and greenish black. This stool is also calledmeconium. This will change to brown and then yellow by the third or fourth day. If the baby is being beast fed he will thereafter have golden yellow stools, slightly sour but not unpleasant to smell.
The stool will usually resemble a paste like consistency. During the fist days, the stools may be slightly more watery with some curd like bits. This is normal as long as the stool is not watery or green. The stool or the napkin may turn slightly green after a while. This is normal too.
If the baby’s stool is extremely watery or a very dark green when passed, or if it contains mucus, it is necessary to visit the doctor. Bottle febabies often have whitish stool with a rather unpleasant odour.
The number of stools a baby passes in a day also varies greatly. One baby may pass a normal stool only every other day; another baby may have a motion almost after every feed. If the consistence of the stool is normal, then there is nothing to worry about.
Babies who are breast fed usuallyhave more frequent stools, and babies on cow’s mil or tinned milk are often constipated and may even pass stools with a little blood. In the caseiof breast fed babies it may so happen that your baby may not have a motion for a few days. That is also normal.
If you breast feed your baby, you must remember he is actually taking in what you have eaten. If you see some of this in his stool, do not be alarmed.