Sunday, May 26, 2024

Can Probiotics Help With Constipation In Babies

The Additional Benefits Of Prebiotics

Probiotics Improve Gas & Constipation by Decreasing Bad Bacteria in the Gut

In addition to probiotics, it is worth mentioning that prebiotics may also be helpful in relieving occasional constipation. Prebiotics act as a food source for the probiotics and help to stimulate the activity of beneficial colonic bacteria. They are thought to have a small laxative effect, but with no risk of dependency. A combination of the probiotic Bifidobacterium lactis BB-12® and prebiotic fibres are widely recognised as an effective remedy to help alleviate constipation and maintain normal bowel function.

Which Are Best For Older Children

Many childrens probiotics are suitable for up to 12 years.

  • Digestive Advantage is a probiotic for children aged 3-12 years containing a bacteria called BC30. There isnt a great deal of published research to support its use and so it cant be recommended.

  • Optibac Probiotics for Babies and Children may aid constipation in children up to 12 years.

  • Culturelle Kids daily chewable tablets are suitable for 3-12 years and may help both constipation and diarrhoea.

  • Alflorex chewable tablets are suitable for children over 3 years and also could help aid constipation.

  • Symprove is primarily aimed at adults but their website states it can be used with children at the discretion of the parent. Its friendly bacteria are associated with improving diarrhoea, constipation and colic.

There are many other brands available and parents should decide which is best for their child. Seek the help of a Registered Dietitian if you are unsure.

Have you tried probiotics with your children and have they helped?

If you would like to see the full reference list for this blog, please contact me.

When Can Babies Have Probiotics

The source of the probiotic determines when your baby can have it. Here is the average age to introduce probiotics to the baby, depending on the different food sources:

  • Yogurt: 12 months. You can try introducing it around the age of nine months .
  • Soy milk: 12 months
  • Cottage cheese: 12 months
  • Probiotic drops, infant formula, and infant cereal: Probiotic drops and infant formula may be available for babies as young as three months old. However, it is best to consult the doctor before giving probiotics to infants below the age of six months. Infants older than six months can safely have probiotic infant cereal, formula, and drops.
  • Fermented soy, milk, and vegetable products: Several traditionally fermented products contain strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Examples of milk-based fermented products are kefir and some types of cheese. Miso and tempeh are fermented soy delicacies that are a dairy-free source of probiotic. Kimchi and Sauerkraut are preparations made by fermenting vegetables with bacteria.

Most cheeses and other fermented milk preparations can be safely introduced to babies at the age of 12 months.

Fermented soy and vegetable preparations can also be given at 12 months, but since they contain high quantities of sodium, consult a pediatrician before trying them.

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Bifidobacterium Animalis Subsp Lactis Dn

B. lactis DN-173 010 is another Bifidobacterium lactis strain shown to be effective at helping to relieve constipation in several clinical studies. In a double-blind parallel study in 70 healthy adults, drinking a daily combination of 375g of milk fermented with the specific Bifidobacterium lactis strain DN-173 010 for 11 days reduced colon transit time by 20%. Interestingly, the effect was more pronounced in women 15. In another similar study, this time a gold standard trial, 12.5 billion CFU of B. lactis DN-173 010 was administered in yoghurt form to 34 individuals with IBS-constipation daily for 4 weeks. B. lactis DN-173 010 was demonstrated to significantly reduce colonic transit time from baseline which was statistically significant comparted with placebo 16.

Are There Probiotics For Diarrhoea

Do Newborns Need Probiotics? Learn More

Research has looked at how probiotics could help diarrhoea, caused by tummy bugs such as Gastroenteritis.

Two strains may help reduce the duration of diarrhoea Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, found in:

Also, the friendly bacteria called Saccharomyces Boullardii may be helpful. It is found in:

Although this is in capsule form, the manufacturers state that the capsule can be opened and the contents can be mixed with cold food or drink.

Unfortunately, theres not enough evidence that probiotics can prevent tummy bugs before they happen .

Of course, the usual advice to treat diarrhoea must still be followed. This includes plenty of fluid to prevent dehydration.

Signs of dehydration include:

  • less urine than usual

  • darker colour urine

  • less responsive behaviour and alertness or a sunken fontanelle .

Rehydration drinks such as Dioralyte may be suitable for some children, especially those over 5 years.

Breastfed babies should continue to be fed and may need extra feeds.

Bottle-fed babies should be offered sips of cooled boiled water in between their feeds.

Seek medical advice for

  • all babies under 12 months or children under 5 years with any signs of dehydration

  • children over 5 years with ongoing signs of dehydration

  • children or babies with bloody diarrhoea, or if diarrhoea continues for more than 7 days.

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Your Baby Is In Daycare And You Want To Decrease Their Chance Of Getting Sick

Babies and toddlers who are around other kids in a daycare setting tend to get sick more frequently than children who stay at home. If you want to decrease your babys chances of getting sick, Kaufmann says probiotics may help, citing a study that found a decrease in incidence of rhinopharyngitis for children in daycare when they drank a fermented yogurt drinkProdeus A, Niborski V, Schrezenmeir J, Gorelov A, Shcherbina A, Rumyantsev A. Fermented Milk Consumption and Common Infections in Children Attending Day-Care Centers: A Randomized Trial. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2016 63:534-543. .

Do Probiotics Help With Baby Constipation

If youve tried all of the above remedies and your baby is still constipated, you might want to consider giving him or her a probiotic.

Babies may have a bacterial imbalance in their gut that affects their GI tract. This, in turn, can result in constipation. Taking a probiotic supplement for infants can delay the onset of GI conditions, lowering the risk of constipation and acid reflux.

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Giving Your Newborn Probiotics Read This First

If you eat yogurt, you probably have at least a vague understanding of probiotics. Theyre organisms, like good bacteria and yeasts, that aid in digestion and boost the immune system. But a new study suggests they may not be so good for newborns.

The study looks at just one subject, a baby boy in Poland who was administered both antibiotics and a probiotic product at two days old. Although he was born full term, the baby weighed just 5 pounds and was diagnosed with intrauterine growth restriction meaning he had a slow growth rate in the womb. The antibiotics were to prevent suspected infection, while the probiotic was to prevent diarrhea from the antibiotics.

Four days later, a blood test and genetic test confirmed he tested positive for an infection from the same strain found in the probiotic.

Heres why were thinking this happened, and why probiotics arent the best choice for babies: because of the fragile lining of a newborns intestinal tract, some bacteria from the probiotics could seep into his bloodstream . A better choice for cultivating necessary gut bacteria is breast milk.

Luckily, there is a happy ending: the infection only resulted in sensitivity and crying, and the baby was home by the time he reached one month old.

Is your baby taking any medications or supplements?

What To Know About Constipation For Babies And Toddlers

How do probiotics help with constipation?
  • Know the symptoms of constipation
  • Understand why constipation happens at these ages
  • Learn common dietary treatments for constipation

Constipation in children is defined as having fewer than two bowel movements per week and/or difficulty passing stools that are small, hard and dry.1 But every child is different. Pay attention to whatever seems regular for your little one, because any deviation from your babys normal can be unpleasant.

What causes constipation?

Inadequate hydration is the likely constipation culprit, along with eating a diet low in fiber.

It is important for babies and toddlers to drink enough fluids to keep their bodies properly hydrated and bowels moving regularly.2 And when increasing the amount of fiber in your childs diet, it is important to keep increasing the amount of water to help process the added fiber.

How much fluid does your family need? Read more here: Hydration to Prevent Constipation for the Family

Is my infant constipated?

Healthy babies under 6 months are unlikely to experience constipation because they receive adequate hydration and nutrients from breastmilk or formula or a combination.

Remember that its very common for your baby to grunt, strain, and turn red while passing stool since their abdominal muscles are still weak so they must work harder to have a bowel movement. As they become older and their muscles get stronger, theyll be able to pass stool much easier!

Reasons babies under 6 months may become constipated:

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Can Babies With Lactose Intolerance And Milk Allergy Have Probiotics

Babies can have probiotic drops or powder safely following recommendations from the manufacturer. However, lactose intolerance and milk allergy become a problem when the primary source of probiotics for the baby is yogurt. The ability to eat probiotic-rich yogurt varies as per the condition :

Lactose intolerance: Lactose intolerant babies may tolerate yogurt, especially if they can breastfeed. You must start with a minimal quantity of yogurt and look for symptoms like stomachache, bloating, and gas. If you sense the baby is tolerating yogurt well, then you can slowly increase the quantity. Give yogurt mixed with food items like cereal or fruits during meal times.

Milk allergy: A baby with a milk allergy is unable to digest only cows milk, but can have breast milk. Therefore, babies with a milk allergy should avoid all milk products including yogurt.

Next, we address a few commonly asked questions about probiotics for babies.

Are Garden Of Life Probiotics Safe For Babies

Garden of Life Baby Probiotics Why They’re Good: Garden of Life is known for creating pure, effective formulas that parents can trust. All of their products, including these baby probiotics, are considered non-GMO, best allergens, vegan, and gluten-free. This product is intended for children from 6 months.

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How To Treat It

A change in formula or in Moms diet could help combat constipation in formula and breastfed babies, respectively. Solid foods, which are often the cause of constipation, can also be the cure, Dr. Shu says. Several kinds of fruits and veggies, such as pears and broccoli, can get things back on track, along with fruit juice and water.

When a change in diet isnt doing the trick, talk to your pediatrician before employing other methods. The doctor might suggest rectal stimulation with the use of a cotton swab or rectal thermometer. This usually produces a bowel movement within several minutes of stimulation, Dr. Shu says. Another possible is a glycerin suppository. If it works, it could take about an hour to produce a poop, Dr. Shu says. Other suggestions may include Miralax, a tasteless powder you can mix into a drink senna, a natural vegetable laxative and lactulose, a synthetic sugar used for treating constipation.

Why Trust Verywell Family

Probiotics For Baby Constipation: Can It Really Help ...

A personal note on my recommendations written above. As a dietitian, I am careful to recommend supplements, especially for babies. I spent time reviewing the most current research on probiotic supplementation for infants, and I looked at multiple brands and products. I believe the supplements in the round-up are made by trusted brands that are devoted to product purity and are composed of high-quality ingredients. Eliza Savage, MS, RD, CDN

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Are There Probiotics For Colic

There is just one recommended probiotic strain called Lactobacillus Reuteri, which has evidence in relation to helping babies and young children suffering from colic . This probiotic is found in the supplement:

Research has shown that this probiotic may increase the effectiveness of colic treatments, decrease colic symptoms, reduce daily crying and unsettled times . The evidence is strongest for breastfed babies and there needs to be more research for formula-fed babies.

There is not strong enough evidence that probiotics can prevent colic before it starts.

What Is The Treatment For Constipation In A Baby

The following lifestyle changes may help treat constipation in babies .

  • Bath: A warm bath may help relax abdominal muscles and relieve any tightness.
  • Exercise: Light physical activity, such as crawling and tummy time, may stimulate bowel movements. You may place younger babies on their back and bicycle their legs gently to provide assisted exercise.
  • Massage: Gentle circular massage on the babys belly may help stimulate bowel movement.
  • Hydrate: Ensure your baby is getting sufficient breast milk or formula. If the baby is older than six months, you may provide them with small amounts of water, especially if the weather is warm.
  • Juices: The juice of certain fruits may work as a natural laxative. Prune juice is usually a popular remedy for constipation, including for babies younger than six months. You may give up to 30ml of homemade prune juice. You may read about how to make prune juice at home here.
  • Formula alteration: Consider switching to another type or brand of formula if you suspect it to be constipations cause. Consult a pediatrician before changing the formula to ensure your baby gets the right formula milk for nourishment.
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    Exclusively Breast Fed Babies: Causes Of Constipation

    If your baby is constipated and breast feeding, it could be due to something in moms diet. If your baby is breast fed you may consider changing your diet, as your child may be allergic to something you are consuming .

    While breast fed babies usually dont have constipation because breast milk is easily digestible, and even considered a natural laxative, it can still happen. But it usually happens around 4 months of age when babies go through a major growth spurt and sleep regression, or after the age of 6 months when other foods such as rice cereals, cows milk, or low fiber foods are introduced.

    If your breast fed baby has pellet like stools, arches their back, and strains while going they may be constipated.

    Best Baby Probiotics For Specific Conditions

    Can Probiotics Eliminate Constipation?

    While were still years away from knowing whether all infants and toddlers should take probiotics daily, there is solid science showing that certain strains can, in fact, help with specific health issues. A few examples:

    Diarrhea: Runny poop is not uncommon among infants and young children. But if diarrhea persists, it can lead to dangerous dehydration. Taking antibiotics for an ear infection or other ailment makes diarrhea more likely. Fortunately, several studies show that a few select strains help prevent or alleviate diarrhea. These include Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, or LGG, found in Culturelle Kids Daily Chewables, Culturelle Daily Probiotic Packets, and MetaKids Baby Probiotic drops, as well as Saccharomyces boulardi lyo CNCM 1-745, available in FlorastorKids Daily Probiotic Supplement.

    Colic: The probiotic L. reuteri DSM 17938 has been well-studied for infants with colic, and the best studies are those done on breastfed babies, Merenstein says. It wont get rid of colic completely, but it will decrease crying time. Some research suggests L. reuteri DSM 17938 may also relieve gastrointestinal upset associated with colic. This strain is found in BioGaia Protectis products, available as drops for infants or chewable tabs for older children, as well as Gerber Soothe Probiotic Colic Drops, Gerber Good Start Soothe Powder Infant Formula, and Pedia-Lax Probiotic Yums.

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    Selecting The Best Probiotics For Constipation

    Understanding how constipation can be alleviated is not enough. You should be able to choose wisely between arrays of brands of bacteria. Keen note has to be taken so as not to land on brands that are an adulteration.

  • Do your research the first step up is to google up the probiotic strain and brand Check reviews , check testimonials etc. Further, take a look at any studies have been done a particular brand and make a wise decision based on findings. This could help in case you experience the same side effects or deterioration in line with findings from these studies.
  • Confirm the expiration date do not take a product which is past its expiry date. Same should be observed with products that are short-expiry as they may as well be low on colony forming units of the beneficial bacteria.
  • Avoid scammed sites to avoid adulteration of your desired probiotic, it is best if you could avoid ordering from sites that are most likely filled with scam. You better walk yourself to the nutrition store and purchase one yourself while enquiring in detail about its viability. Beware of the sweet deals that some manufacturers use to attract market such as return of faulty products as this may not be genuine.
  • Enquire about the dosage constipation may arise if you take higher amounts of the probiotic. Enquire enough about the amount you should take per day and the frequency. Do add that you want to know if there are any drug interactions with the probiotic.
  • Our Clinic’s Approach To Treating Constipation In Infants & Children

    At Brown Family Chiropractic, we often see children and infants brought in for constipation. Kids that go three to four days, even up to a week between bowel movements. That is not a healthy thing. The body isnt functioning properly and toxic stool isnt being eliminated from the body causing an unhealthy buildup.

    So we help by working on digestion and work on promoting elimination in the body to get all that toxic load out of the body. You know how it feels when your gut is not feeling great. Youre bloated. Youre uncomfortable. Kids or infants even have the same symptoms.

    Constipation may be due to an issue in the very lower part of their spine. The sacrum, which is a triangular bone at the base of the spine, is the last bone to become completely bone in the human body. Not until you the age of about 25 does that become completely solid bone. In a child, its cartilage. That means its not quite as hard as normal bone.

    When a child falls right onto their bum or have a significant slip on the ice and come down on their on their lower back, oftentimes, that sacrum will buckle, or itll create just a little buckle, in that the nerves that leave that area go to the bowel and bladder. So that produces a little pull on those nerves. And that often can cause things like constipation, diarrhea, or bedwetting.

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