I had this whole big long post all written out about our tummy troubles but then I decided it was too long and too boring and probably more specific than any of you needed to know. If someone pops by because of a google search about their baby and allergens and green mucousy poo and wants more info then please leave a comment and I’ll answer any questions you have. Today we are going to try for the streamlined version.
But before that I’m going to spam you with this photo of my babies. ♥♥
Isn’t it just the best? This photo of them laughing together makes my heart want to explode with happiness.
Ok so here is how it all went down. Basically, from the get go BeeGee was a bit of a refluxy type baby. We manage to figure out in the early weeks that dairy was not her thing and egg made her scream scream scream so we cut those two things out.
Before we cut stuff out we tried everything from side sleeping (which helped) to buying an expensive second hand baby hammock (which didn’t really seem to help much at all) and it wasn’t until we eliminated the dairy and did it completely (so no food it is even cooked into like CAKE!) that she became more settled.
I’ve since tried to introduce both as a test (deliberately once and accidentally a few times) and honestly these two things just do not work. The dairy trial made her do a big vom in the middle of the night which never happens and egg still makes her scream like I am the devil.
Despite all this growth was great. She was averaging 300g weight gain per week at her 6 week check up with the paediatrician. She was pretty happy and getting fat and all was pretty good. Normal baby stuff. No big deal.
At around 9 weeks old all of a sudden she went from pooping yellow seedy healthy breast milk poops 1-3 times every second day and never at night anymore to pooping green mucousy poops at every single feed, including overnight. After this had gone on for a few days we had a paed visit and when he weighed her we realised she was still at her 6 week weight. I suspect she’d put more weight on since then but lost it with the drastic pooping that was now part of our world. Changing poops during the night blows. We still aren’t out of this although some nights are better/worse than others.
Anyway, he sent me away with strict no dairy and now soy too (which I wasn’t knowingly having but it was in my gluten free bread – soy and dairy proteins are quite similar if you wondering why this change). I also looked at my diet to ask myself what I had introduced in a big way since giving up dairy and it was coconut milk, so I decided to cut that too. All coconut. I can’t tell you how hard that was as coconut is used in so many alternative foods and recipes. I was starting to feel so limited. I now laugh at this. My current diet makes this restriction seem like a walk in the park.
He also sent me to weigh her in a week and call him with an update of what was happening.
1 week later: weight gain of only 20g. I started to get more worried. But poops were less frequent and starting to get a yellow tinge to them so I thought maybe we’d turn a corner.
2 weeks later: weight gain of only 30g (same scales as previous week too). Poops had not improved as I’d hoped.
12 Weeks – Paediatrician appointment
Weight gain: 130g – much improved but still under the ideal.
By this appointment I was starting to get pretty concerned that BeeGee wasn’t thriving. Because she was a big baby to begin with she has had the weight to lose so she doesn’t look scrawny. Plus she is a super happy and smiley baby. So I get lots of comments like this:
“Oh but she looks fine” “Are you sure it’s a big deal? Baby’s tummies take awhile to develop you know” “My baby didn’t put on loads of weight and she was fine” “Well you aren’t a very tall/big person”
I am so sick to death of these comments. I know people mean well but REALLY. It’s not JUST the weight gain, it’s the wicked poos as well when we used to have completely normal poos. Something is different, something is off and the combination of factors just isn’t right. There are premmie babies in my mother’s group that have overtaken her weight gain. And she is too young to be correcting for genetic potential (confirmed by the Paed – babies don’t do this until they get older – we want them putting on weight in that first 3 months post birth).
Anyway my Paed doesn’t say these things and freely admits that sometimes you watch really happy babies go downhill and they stay happy, that’s just their temperament, so he shares my concerns that she’s not thriving. At this appointment he gave me a tin of partially hydrolysed formula which essentially means the milk protein has been broken down to help babies with a protein intolerance absorb it. He didn’t want me to replace breastfeeding, only supplement it when my supply was low – mainly in the evenings. The trouble is, this whole thing is such a guessing game. I may have enough milk but she might not be absorbing it well for some strange allergen reason, but maybe I don’t have enough milk, maybe it’s something else altogether.
I was so sad about this turn of events though. I had really hoped to breastfeed exclusively until she was 1. So based on her more positive weight gain this week I decided to hold off for another week just to see how we’d go (even though the Paed told me not to).
Also, the stool test showed she had elevated white blood cells in her bowel which basically just means inflammation
1 week later: 30g weight gain this week
So 30g clearly wasn’t enough. I caved and made the call to try the formula top up. We decided to try it first thing in the morning in case there was some sort of allergen reaction to it so it wouldn’t disturb the night time and sleep. I am so glad we made that call.
She hated the bottle (which I was secretly pleased about). We couldn’t actually get her to suck on it. She takes a dummy so I thought she might have been into it but no, no idea. During the process we did manage to shake quite a few drops down into her mouth though but still, no feed. About 15 minutes after we did this she started to scream and she screamed like that for 45 mins. There was no consoling her, wouldn’t go on the boob, nothing. Her eyebrows went really red and she got red dots on her forehead. I am convinced she had an allergen response to the stuff.
Result: we are never trying that stuff again.
2 weeks later: 150g weight gain this week
So this takes us up to 1 week ago. There is progress from here but I’ll save it for the next post because there are a few words I have to say about that.
BeeGee is on a allergen friendly probiotic which seemed to make her go more at first but I think things are slowing down and improving again.
I have also started a pretty full-on low allergen diet. I am off the top 8 high allergen foods (dairy, eggs, tree nuts, wheat, fish, shellfish, peanuts, soy) PLUS other main contenders (coffee, tomato, corn, citrus fruits and a lot of other fruit and veg).
It is easier to say what I am eating – basically a lot of lamb, rice based products, potato, green peas, carrot, sweet potato, quinoa. I use the lamb fat as an oil to cook veges in a lot and I also have a very good quality 100% olive oil that I use a little too. I have a little chicken but I’m not sure about it. Even this list can cause problems for some babies. I considered the TED (Total Elimination Diet) but it basically has you eating 4 foods until you get to baseline and I’m just not down on the lack of nutrition this provides for a breastfeeding mum. It is hard enough as it is.
Where to from here? Another paed and regular check ups with the GP. If I can get her to put on enough weight then I can probably live with the green poops. A lot of babies sort themselves out with the introduction of solids and we aren’t too far away from that so I am hoping that will be the case for us too. It is hard. I hate so much that she isn’t thriving. It makes me feel terrible.