Many parents as well as relatives are obsessed about the changes observed in their infants stool. For this reason they should be familiar with the characteristic of the normal stool in infants and toddlers, as well as of various abnormal stools. Though the information gleaned from the examination of the stools may have limitations, it contributes a better understanding among parents as well as pediatricians.
Many times the color and consistency of your infants stool provide the best indication of his health. Depending on what your infant is fed upon, the color and consistency of stool varies.When the infant intake is composed entirely of milk, the stools are yellow to golden and of salve like consistency. When cow’s milk or formula milk is ingested, the stool color varies from pale yellow to dark green or light brown. The stool is slightly firm with more decided odor, owing to decomposition of protein when formula fed.
Causes Of Mucus In Infant Stool
Mucus is often present in the stools of infants. It may be of no significance if present in small amounts. Stool that consists mucus are often watery, that does not always mean diarrhea or infection.However, you need to consult a health care provider if the stools are green or tinged with blood and mucus which are more frequent.
Here are some of the causes for mucus in infants stool:
There are some conditions where mucus secretion is in excess such as in cold and during teething period. Excess of mucus produced in these conditions is swallowed by the infant and it appears in his stool as mucus. However, if mucus is found in large amount and bloodstained it may be a bacterial infection or intussusception. Viral diseases can also produce mucus in stool with varied stool color.
Mucus in infants stool can be an indication of malabsorption. It may indicate that the infant is not absorbing proper nutrients from either breast milk or cow’s milk or formula products.
Sometimes, undigested starch may resemble like mucus.
Mucus In Stool Of Toddler
As the infant grows older the stools become dark yellow, especially when he starts to eat various types of food. The amount of milk is relatively diminished. The characteristic of stool is similar to that of an adult in both color and odor. The dietary changes during the toddler phase thus lead to changes in various bowel movements, and mucus in stool is one such change observed.
Normally mucus is present in intestine for lubrication of the inner lining of the intestine and smooth passage. During bowel movement some amount of mucus is normally passed, however if the if there is lots of mucus in a toddlers stool it can be a cause of worry.
Here are some of the causes of mucus in toddlers stool:
A toddler is vulnerable to many types of intestinal infections at his school or day care centers. Due to sharing of toys and close contact, the infection can spread from one toddler to another. Rota virus and shigella bacteria are common infection. Both diseases causes diarrhea with mucus.
Certain bowel inflammatory disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, colitis can also cause mucus in stool. These diseases are more common in adults however they can be found in some toddlers.
Treatment For Mucus In Stool
In most cases mucus in stool may not be of any importance if present in less amount, however if it is present in greater amount the pediatrician may advice a stool test. If the test is normal, the infant may not need any specific treatment. The doctor may recommend change in the diet and formula feeding or milk feeding. Many times a breast fed infant may have various types of stool with mucus, depending on mother’s diet. For serious cases the doctor may advise medications.
The same is the case with a toddler aged 2 to 5 years. If there is infection of bacterial or viral origin the baby may need to drink more fluids to prevent dehydration. A proper hygienic care will reduce the chance of spread of infection. In some cases the doctor may prescribe antibiotics for your toddler.