Prune Juice for a Baby: Good or Bad Idea?

Prune Juice for a Baby: Good or Bad Idea?

Babies and their bowel movements — bet you never expected to be talking about so much poop. But here we are!
In this article 📝

  • Can I give my baby prune juice?
  • Can you give 3 month old prune juice?
  • When can babies have prune juice for constipation?
  • How much prune juice can you give a baby?

Let’s take a look at constipation and whether using prune juice for babies is recommended.

Babies aren’t generally great at explaining why they’re cranky.

Trying to spot if your little one is constipated can be a tough job, and once you figure it out, what are you supposed to do about it?

While you might hit the prune juice at the first signs of your own bowel issues, is prune juice for baby constipation a recommended treatment?

Can I give my baby prune juice?

Hmm, it depends! If your baby is under 12 months of age, you’d definitely need to seek your doctor’s approval before dosing with prune juice.

They might want to look into the causes behind your baby’s constipation and suggest other options first.

Even for toddlers over one year of age, prune juice should be used within certain limits to be a safe constipation treatment.

Prune juice contains high amounts of a sugar alcohol called sorbitol plus certain phenolic compounds, both of which act as laxatives.

Giving a young baby with an immature digestive system too much of these substances can be problematic, as they are essentially gut irritants.

Can you give 3 month old prune juice?

No, generally not. If you think your three month old might be constipated, speak to your doctor first about their symptoms.

They may recommend using prune juice for infants of three months, but it’s quite unlikely.

A warm bath and clockwise-motioned tummy massages are often used to help babies pass a bowel movement if they are too young for juice or other medicinal treatments.

When can babies have prune juice for constipation?

It’s generally suggested that your baby shouldn’t be offered prune juice before six months of age, or whenever you start them on solids.

Constipation is unusual in younger infants who are breastfed or bottle fed, so it’s unlikely to be needed.

It can be normal for babies to go several days without having a bowel movement, so don’t panic!

Although one sign of constipation is infrequent bowel movements, you can also be on the lookout for:

  • Pain that causes your baby to cry and arch their back while passing a stool.
  • Your baby straining for a long time to have a bowel movement.
  • Any blood in the stool and tears around the anus which may be bleeding.
  • A stool which is dry, hard, or large in diameter.
  • Any leaking of liquid from the anus between bowel movements.

It’s sometimes normal for babies and toddlers to grunt and strain to poop, so this isn’t a standalone sign of constipation.

Of course, if you’re ever concerned about your little one’s pooping habits, your doctor should be able to give you some specific advice.

How much prune juice can you give a baby?

Once you’ve had the go-ahead from your doctor to try prune juice, make sure to ask exactly how much prune juice for baby is the right amount.

The juice can be diluted with water for additional hydration, if you think your little one might benefit from it.

One rule of thumb is a maximum of four ounces daily in no more than twice daily doses, so you might be looking to offer a maximum of two ounces, twice a day. But this will depend on your baby’s weight and age.

Prunes in their whole form are a great source of fiber, which is reduced when turned into a juice.

If you want to use prune’s natural laxative effects without using juice, you can include prune puree or mash in your baby’s diet once they’ve started solids.

🍯 More on food for babies and toddlers:
Best Baby Food Recipes
What are the Best First Foods for a Baby?
How Many Ounces Should a Baby Eat? A Chart
The Best First Finger Foods for Baby
Best Finger Foods for a Baby
When Can Babies Have Honey?

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