Understanding your baby’s stool

Yes, it’s a topic many would rather steer away from; but your baby cannot talk, and observing her stool – its colour and consistency -  can help you understand what’s going on inside. So here goes:

Colour and Consistency

Greenish-black stool in the first few days of the baby’s life: This is how the baby’s stool should look like in his first few days, and this stool is referred to as “meconium”. Meconium is made of amniotic fluid, mucus, skin cells, and other stuff in the womb, and it does not have a smell.

Yellow –mustard like stool: This is the stool of the breast fed infant.

Brownish, peanut butter-like stools: This is the stool of the formula fed infant. It is firmer than the breastfed infant and it looks like a paste.

Dark Green-blackish stool: This is the stool of the baby who is taking an iron supplement. If the baby’s stool is black but he is not taking iron supplements, see a health care professional.

Brown- dark brown thickened stool: this is the stool of the infant who is fed solid foods.

Liquid – diarrhoea stool: the stool of the infant who has diarrhoea is loose and quite fluid. It may even be completely liquid. This could indicate that the baby has an infection or allergy.  See a health care professional if this lasts more than 24 hours.

Hard- pebbly stool: this is the stool of the infant who has constipation.

Red stool: It could be red because of some red foods the baby has eaten, or if the baby is not at the eating stage yet, red stool indicates that there is blood in the infant’s stool which can indicate a bacterial infection.

White stool is caused by a lack of bile, which may indicate a serious underlying problem in the liver, gallbladder or small intestine. Contact your health care professional immediately if you notice this in your baby’s diaper.