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The inside scoop on baby poop

baby-diaper-changePrior to having a baby, you probably didn’t have much to say about poop. However, poop is an obvious obsession for new parents: a newborn may leave you with a little present with every diaper in his first six weeks, so you’re engaging with the subject far more than you ever have in your life (unless, of course, you’ve worked at a day care center).

Also, as the experts at Incredible Infant point out, “Your baby’s poo, although not the nicest thing to look out, is your best window into the innermost workings of his little body.” The color and consistency of what comes out helps you determine what ought to go in, and when the pediatrician ought to be consulted. Given that most new parents are at least a little anxious about your child’s health, and concerned with whether you’re doing everything right, you may find, like Maya at Offbeat Home, that poop becomes “a source of both pride and fear”:

“When her poop turned to wet, curdled yellow (at three days! So advanced), I felt more pride — more than my aching boobs, this was incontrovertible proof that my milk had come in. It also felt like the first significant milestone in my baby’s life, the first distance from the womb. She was now pooping out the milk I gave her, not the scum from her amniotic fluid. She was a real person now — an eating, pooping little person.”

Finally: in the initial weeks of your baby’s life, at least, you’re constantly together and absolutely everything about them is interesting, so naturally, the ever-changing kaleidoscope of hues that his artistic little bottom creates will be fascinating to you.

This convenient chart, pulled out of Buzzfeed’s terrific roundup of 23 Incredibly Helpful Charts For New Parents, is a beginner’s intro to the subject of baby poo, but I’d definitely suggest consulting the more detailed breakdown on Incredible Infant as well, if only because I find the potty humor amusing (your mileage may vary).

baby poop chart

A note of warning: while you’ve long since left behind the point at which a freshly-filled diaper makes you gag, your friends and family might not be QUITE as enamored of the potty-talk as you are. So, be considerate!  If your pals are like me and think the whole business is endlessly hilarious, then you’re fine; if they’re like the folks at STFU Parents, you may want to tone it down a touch.

And you may want to save discussing your own first post-labor poo for other moms… if only so you don’t discourage them from ever having kids of their own!

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