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Thread: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    13

    Default Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    My 4-week-old spent his first three weeks as a good eater and a good sleeper. Then his poop started turning green, and he got very gassy. Googling around, the two explanations I can find are oversupply and food allergy.

    His poops are green, loose, and frequent, but not frothy
    He is very gassy
    He is gaining weight much faster than most babies (1.5-2 oz per day)
    He's very fussy, and can't seem to sleep well during the day

    But I'm never engorged or leaking, even when he sleeps the occasional 4 hour stretch at night.

    I don't know if the fast weight gain is a symptom. My first baby also gained weight quickly, but never had green poop.

    Likewise, last time I almost never got engorged. It took a full 24 hours to start leaking when he was 8 months old (and the size of a 1-year-old) and still exclusively breastfeeding.

    So why is my baby fussy and pooping green? The crying is driving us all crazy.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    20,930

    Default Re: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    Welcome to the forum!

    There are 2 other potential cause for green poops: first, that the green poop is a variation of normal, and second, illness. Babies with a tummy bug often poop green for a while.

    The most likely explanation for green poops in a young baby is oversupply. Most new moms have a lot of milk, and you can have more than your baby needs even without feeling engorged. The fact that your baby is gaining weight pretty quickly and is gassy points to high supply.

    If it's not oversupply, and it's not an illness, then allergy/intolerance to something you're eating may be the explanation. Dairy is the most common problem- and keep in mind that when a baby h a problem with cow's milk, it's not lactose (sugar) intolerance, but rather an intolerance of the proteins in cow's milk. So you might want to consider trying a dairy elimination and seeing if things improve. Simply cutting down on your intake may be enough, but sometimes things don't improve until mom has completely eliminated dairy, including trace amounts found in processed foods, for several weeks.

    The good news is that green poops are not in and of themselves a health problem. So don't let them worry you too much.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,396

    Default Re: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    i agree with mommal, there are a couple other possibilities. Also I think what you describe is textbook for overproduction. Babies with food allergies tend to have poor absorption so weight gain is more typically poor.

    But even if it is overproduction, that does not mean you need to do anything about it. for one thing, it will likely regulate on its own over time. Baby is gaining great, as mommal says, green poops due to overproduction are not a health concern and gas and fussiness are also not health concerns. If you want to try some ideas for dealing with forceful letdown or oversupply to see if that helps baby be more comfortable, you can try the ideas here.
    http://kellymom.com/bf/got-milk/supp.../fast-letdown/

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    13

    Default Re: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    I'm glad to hear that y'all think it's not a health issue.

    Alas, the fussiness is really frustrating all of us. How long does it take to get better?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    Good question, but that is going to vary alot. Generally, milk production ramps up for the first 4-6 weeks and then 'levels off', because from about 6 weeks to 6 months a breastfed baby needs about the same amount of milk each day-the needed volume does not keep going up as baby grows.

    So theoretically, as long as baby tells your body how much he needs-this happens best if baby is allowed to nurse pretty frequently, generally at baby's cues (no pumping unless needed for separations) your body should quickly get a clear message how much is too much and cut back.

    But if it's really causing baby issues, no reason not to try the ideas in the article. I would suggest, hold off on block feeding for a bit and see if the other stuff helps, just because block feeding will actually decrease production and its hard to tell if that is needed in the very early weeks.

    I had severe overproduction and my baby was very colicky (long crying jags in the evening) and that calmed down and went away entirely after about 8 weeks. of course she still fusses, she is fussing in my arms right now. babies just fuss. But the really bad stuff is long over (she is 4 months old now.)
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; November 25th, 2012 at 09:17 PM. Reason: can't spell

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    13

    Default Re: Oversupply, allergy, or something else?

    I know babies fuss. My first was a professional fusser. This one, though, was sweet and easy before the green poop started. Now he's so bad my MiL said it was probably colic except that he's calmest in the evenings instead of worst in the evenings.

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