Infant Digestive Problems

Infant Digestive Problems

  Autor Dr. Denis Stanescu, medic specialist pediatrie Data: 09.08.2006

Infant Digestive Problems
Chronic diarrhea is the condition of having a fast bowel movement with modified stool that lead to a sudden loss of water and sodium. The factors that cause it, are: viral, bacterial (E.coli, Salmonellae etc.) or parasitic (Giardia). 

The disease is transmitted by fecal-oral route (the transmission pathogens to the mouth, by dirty hands, ingestion of contaminated water and food). Diarrhea starts suddenly, with or without fever, sometimes with vomiting which starts 8-12 hours before the disease. 
The stools are modified regarding: the consistency (watery and with secretion or blood), the color and frequency (up to 20 stools per day). 
Note! In case you use disposable diapers, it's hard to make the difference between a watery stool and urine, therefore it is recommended to bring the diapers to the doctor too. The younger the child is, the higher is the risk, as there is a big loss of liquids through stools and vomiting. It is compulsory to see the doctor, but here are some advices until you get to a medical clinic: 
  • It is not recommended to administer antiemetics (drugs against vomiting) without a medical prescription; 
  • The dehydration is an emergency which is treated with teas or boiled and cooled water in which you add rehydration salts, as mentioned on the label. Note! The rehydration solutions shouldn't be more or less concentrated than recommended! 
  • The liquid must be administered in small quantities every few minutes; 
  • The minimum quantity of liquids that must be administered one day, has to be at least equal to the child's body weight x 100 ml (for example: for a child of 6 kg, the minimum quantity must be 6 x 100 ml = 600 ml). 
  • The antibiotics are not necessary unless you deal with exudative diarrhea or with a general infection risk; 
  • It is recommended to strictly comply with the hygiene rules. Below, we describe some hygiene rules to comply with when the infant is sick and also when he is healthy: 
1. adults must always wash their hands with soap before getting intocontact with the infants;
2. the child's bottles must be boiled in water for 20 minutes before each
use; 3. it is recommended to have more soothers which are boiled for 4 minutes in the morning, so that you use another one which is sterilized when one falls from the mouth (even in the cot); 
4. in the summer, the soup, cottage cheese and other homemade food are easy to alter even in the fridge. If you don't eat them in 48 minutes, throw them away; 
5. you must consume the milk in 30 minutes after the preparation, themost.
  • In infants, it's better to stop the feeding with powder milk and replace it with watery solutions with rehydration salts. Start feeding him again with a special alimentation based on milk without lactose. Note! Don't interrupt the breastfeeding in case you do so! 
  • In babies older that 6 months, the dietary changes are more varies: rice, carrots, bananas, ripe apples and quinces; 
  • It is prohibited to give him sweets, sugar, fruits and vegetables which ferment. 
Remember! Go to the doctor as urgent as you can, because the dehydration risk is very high! 




Read the English version of this article: Infant Digestive Problems