Is a diaper blowout diarrhea?

Poop explosions are never fun, but are they a sign of a problem? A paediatrician explains what it really means when your baby has a diaper blowout.

Photo: iStockphoto

My baby has been having a lot of diaper blowouts. Is it diarrhea?

My kids were always having poopsplosions! Babies have very liquid stools, which can look like a puddle in the diaper. Many babies will poop with vigour, leading to diaper blowouts. What distinguishes normal bowel movements from diarrhea is the frequency. Many newborns will poop 10 to 15 times a day. If your baby is suddenly going many more times than usual, it is considered diarrhea. The treatment for diarrhea is simple, though—feed often to ensure your baby doesn’t become dehydrated. It is uncommon for babies to become dehydrated from diarrhea on its own (with no vomiting). Signs of dehydration include lethargy, poor feeding, dry eyes and mouth, and infrequent urination. Diarrhea can linger for a few days or even weeks. If your baby has diarrhea for two weeks or longer, if the diarrhea is increasing in volume or frequency instead of decreasing or if you are concerned your child might be dehydrated, please see a doctor.

Check out Breakfast Television’s new podcast Moms in the Middle. Episode 4: The Scoop on Poop

Read more:
How do I know if my baby has a food intolerance?
How to cope the first time your baby gets sick

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