Is it normal for newborns to grunt or strain when they poop?

African-American-Mother-and-BabyIt’s hard to see your baby cry, especially when she’s pooping. Parents often assume that babies are constipated if they strain or cry when they poop. Although this is true in older children, babies commonly grunt and strain with defecation because of a reflex that causes them to push when fecal material enters the rectum. However, if this behavior concerns you, be sure to mention it to the doctor at the baby’s next checkup. In rare cases, a baby’s anal opening may be too tight or her anus may be in the wrong position. Although rare, these anatomic variations can make it more difficult to pass stool.

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