Who knew baby poop has so many different shades other than yellow? Well, having a baby is an absolute adventure, especially in the poop zone. However, all these poop colors and textures have health causes associated with them. So, read ahead to know about such detailed information via an in-depth baby poop color chart. Since Pink Orchid is always here to help you figure out baby healthcare-related matters. Let’s understand what’s normal and what’s unusual in different cases of baby poop color and texture.
Besides, your child’s poop color can be an indicator of your little one's health status. During the first year of their life, your child’s body undergoes several changes. These changes are directly related to their poop’s texture. Our adult sensibilities usually do not apply in the case of babies going through dietary changes.
So, let us see what each of those baby poop colors and textures mean. In addition, it’s time that you learn Baby Massage Techniques to alleviate your child’s pain on your own. It’s an opportunity to learn with the expert herself - Annie Hakim.
Table Of Contents
The Ultimate Guide To All Baby Poop Colors
You must be wondering what is a normal poop color for babies since the colors of their poop change so much and what does it say about their health? Here is a guide to all the colors you might see in your babies’ diaper:
1. Black Baby Poop
Your newborn will likely pass black stool with a tar-like consistency in the initial days. This practice is referred to as meconium. It consists of mucus, skin cells, amniotic fluid, lanugo hairs, and other particles swallowed by your child while in the womb. It has hardly any odor. After a few days, the color should shift to yellowy-green with perhaps less mucus. Although, your baby's first bowel movement must happen within 24 hours post-birth. You can consult your baby’s healthcare provider in case of failure.
2. Mustard Yellow Baby Poop
A newborn's post meconium stool changes to a healthy mustard yellow color. It's a standard color for breastfeeding or chestfeeding babies. For the first few months post-birth, a breastfed newborn's stools will look exactly like Dijon mustard. It will also have a slightly runny consistency. However, it could also possibly be white-ish with seed-like fat particles. You can expect mucus with your baby's poop. Also, please note that the color of your little one's stools may also depend on what you are eating. So, if you are eating green leafy vegetables, your baby's poop might also have a green tint.
3. Tan Yellow Baby Poop
A formula-fed baby's poop is not usually as runny as a breastfed baby's. It has a more paste-like consistency (not firmer than peanut butter) with a darker yellow or tan color. Bright yellow poop is typical to be found in breastfed or chestfed kids. It may also appear in formula-fed babies. If the frequency of bright yellow poop with runny consistency is more than average, it also possess a risk of diarrhea. However, in addition, diarrhea often raises concerns about dehydration. So, do not hesitate to consult your doctor.
4. Orange Baby Poop
Baby poop can also turn orange due to plant pigments. Foods such as sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, and oranges often carry this pigment. Fruits and vegetables that contain beta carotene give the baby poop an orange hue. You can witness this in breastfed/chestfed and formula-fed babies. Another cause for orange baby poop is medication. Some antibiotics and antacids contain aluminum hydroxide, which is also responsible for turning poop orange.
5. Brown Baby Poop
After introducing solid food items to your child’s diet, their poop changes from mushy and mild to thick, dark, and smelly. As your baby's diet becomes more adult-like, their stools would too. But if the stools are hard like pellets or dark in color and firmly formed, that could be a sign of constipation. You can consult your doctor for further treatment.
6. Red Baby Poop
Red baby poop results from food pigments. Foods or drinks that are dark red in colors, such as tomato juice or beetroot. It could also mean the particles of blood in your baby's bowel movements. Blood bits mixed with baby poop could be due to intestinal infection, milk allergens, or anal fissure. Raise your concerns with a pediatrician. Certain red-colored medications, such as amoxicillin or cefdinir, may also cause your baby's poop to turn red.
7. Greenish Tan Or Dark Green Baby Poop
Baby poop dark green in color may sound like a serious concern but is absolutely no cause of worry! Greenish tan or dark green poop is a common color for formula-fed babies. The green color results from iron sulfate or iron supplements present in formulas. The poop is also firmer than a breastfed or chestfed baby. Formula-fed babies poop less frequently than breastfed babies, and the stools are usually more smelly.
Babies starting with solid foods which are green in colors, such as peas or leafy vegetables, can have green pigment in the poop. You must consult a doctor if green-colored poop is accompanied by other symptoms. Symptoms such as vomiting, fever, lethargy, loss of appetite, or blood in the stool.
8. White Or Gray Baby Poop
If the baby isn't producing enough bile in their liver, their poop turns white or grayish. It is an indication that the baby isn't digesting the food properly. A pediatrician should immediately address white poop or gray poop with a chalky consistency. White baby poop, as well as chalky gray or pale yellow poop, could be a sign of liver blockage. Liver cells produce bile which helps the body break down fat. If bile can’t drain out of the liver and gets trapped inside, it builds up in the liver. It would damage and scar the liver cells of the baby.
Related: 10 Tips For Successful Breastfeeding: Guide For New Moms
The Ultimate Guide To All Baby Poop Textures
While the colors of your baby's poop can be an indicator of your baby's health, the texture is an essential factor too. The combination of the two will inform more than the color alone.
1. Newborn Baby
Newborn poop has a thick tar-like texture. It is standard for newborns and should change within the first couple of days of their life. After a few days, your baby's poop must switch to a looser yellow texture. If that doesn't happen, consult your pediatrician.
2. Breastfed Baby
Breastfed or chestfed babies have loose stools that contain seed-like substances. Their bowel movements will also be more frequent than formula-fed babies as human milk gets digested faster. Loose stools and frequent bowel movements won't mean diarrhea in this case.
3. Formula-Fed Baby
Formula-fed babies have firmer poop than breastfed or chestfed babies. Their poop varies from tan and brown or green and yellow. Constipation in a baby would make them strain during pooping. Stools would be infrequent and hard.
4. Weaning Stage
In the transitional stage of weaning your baby from only fluids to solid foods, your baby's poop is likely to become more firm and may start smelling strong. The color will vary widely, and there will be undigested bits in your baby’s diapers. This is because they are still not used to processing solid foods.
5. After Starting Solids
Baby poop after starting solids becomes more adult-like. It would be thicker, darker, and a lot more strong smelling due to the extra fats and sugars in their new diet. Its appearance would change according to the different foods in the diet.
6. Constipated Baby
A constipated baby would find it hard to pass stools. Small, dark brown, pebble-like drops are also an indicator of this. It is best that you speak with your pediatrician before trying any at-home remedies to relieve constipation.
7. Signs Of Diarrhea
Signs of diarrhea in your baby's poop would show up as loose and watery stools that occur more frequently than usual. Diarrhea in infants is harder to point out because they usually have looser stools than babies on solid foods.
8. Mucus Or Frothy
Baby poop with mucus can sometimes occur from your baby swallowing their own drool while teething. This makes their stools frothy or has mucus in them. If your baby's poop has this texture and they are not drooling, it could be a sign of infection and should be checked by your doctor.
Which Poop Color Means Calling A Doctor?
Red, white, or gray are always concerning colors! Bright red poop color could be an indication of blood in the stool which requires the immediate attention of a pediatrician. White or gray stools are a sign of indigestion problems. Consult your child’s doctor, if such is the case.
Black baby poop occurring beyond the first few days of birth is worth a doctor's examination. It could be an indicator of dried blood in the digestive tract of the baby.
Green color baby poop is absolutely normal. But if it happens with other symptoms like diarrhea, fever, or irritability, consult a doctor.
Above all, trust your parental intuition.
How To Tell If Your Baby Has Pooped?
Baby poop after every meal isn't necessary. Newborns have few bowel movements in the early stages. It is not a cause for concern. Because breastfed or chestfed babies may only poop only once a week till 3 to 6 weeks. On the other hand, formula-fed babies can see bowel movements once a day. Anything less than that could be an indicator of constipation. However, some formula-fed babies might not poop once a day.
Babies on solid foods should see daily bowel movements. If they are pooping more than once after each feeding, it could be a sign of diarrhea.
Changes in the color and consistency of your baby's poop are to be expected in the first year of their life. Monitor these changes and consult your pediatrician if you see anything concerning.
Related: How To Curb Baby's Teething Pain With Massages
1. What is a normal baby poop color?
Brown, yellow, or green are all typical baby poop colors. They do not hold any alarming concerns related to your child’s health.
2. Do babies poop in the womb?
Babies usually don't poop in the mother’s womb. The placenta assists in supplying nutrients to the baby as well as in removing waste.
3. How do I know if my baby has diarrhea?
A sudden increase in pooping and looseness of stools, lasting past three or more stools, could be a sign of diarrhea.
4. How do I know if my baby is gassy?
A gassy baby is likely to cry while or after passing gas. Especially if the crying is unlikely to be related to being hungry or tired, they might also arch their back or liftt their leg. Their stomach could be swollen, and they would belch or pass gas frequently. All these signs are of a gassy baby.
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The color and texture of your baby's poop can change due to various reasons. Feeding and age are also important factors to consider. If you have any concerns about your baby's bowel movements, do not hesitate to reach out to your pediatrician.
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