|Constipation in a newborn can be a sign that your baby isn't getting enough to eat. If your new baby is not having frequent bowel movements, be sure to discuss with your Pediatrician your baby's feeding schedule, amount of wet diapers and if he seems to be gaining weight.
After your baby is born, he will pass meconium for a few days, which is a dark green or black substance. Regular bowel movements, which begin being lighter than meconium, usually start by about the third day of life. At this time, bowel movements also become more frequent, especially for breastfeeding mothers. If your baby isn't having regular bowel movements by the fourth or fifth day of life, or if he is still passing meconium, then that may be a sign that he isn't getting enough to eat.
Constipation is defined as the passage of hard, pellet-like stools that cause pain or bleeding (groaning or straining is normal) and not so much by how often your baby has a bowel movement. Keep in mind that some breast fed babies only have one bowel movement each week or two after they are 3-4 weeks old. Breastfed babies are very rarely constipated if you are exclusively breastfeeding.
Initial treatment for constipation is by giving 2-4 ounces of water or diluted prune juice once or twice a day or by changing to a soy based formula if you are using formula.