Green Stools in Toddlers – What Is There to Know?

There are a lot of people who are very particular about the stools of their toddlers and this is considered to be a good thing because stools can indicate whether the toddler is healthy or not. The stools can also indicate whether the toddler has an underlying health condition.

There are a lot of parents who become concerned when they see that their toddlers have released green stools. Admittedly, the sight of green poop in toddlers can be disconcerting but with proper research, it can be explained. While there may be instances when it can show a digestive or intestinal problem, it is likely that green stools will stop after some time.

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Different Colored Stools

It is important to educate yourself about the possible colored stools and how they can indicate things about your toddler’s health. Instead of panicking immediately whenever a newly colored stool is found, the details mentioned below can serve as guide.

  • Green, Tan, Yellow, Brown – Based on the bile that makes the stools change color, these colors are considered to be normal although brown is the most common normal color at all. Green and yellow may indicate that the stools are released by the system rapidly.
  • Black – Can be caused by the different food products and sometimes can also be caused by blood in the digestive system. There are also other medications that may cause the stools to become black.
  • Red – There are some parents who panic when they see that their children has red stools, it is important to know that red stools does not always indicate bleeding although it may show that there is a sign of bleeding at the lower intestinal tract.
  • White or Light Gray – This is considered to be one of the serious colors of stools because it may show that bile is not able to penetrate the stools. Having white stools may indicate serious health conditions although there are also times when the color is just caused by the diet of the toddler. Do remember that the only diet that can cause white stools is having an all milk diet. Feeding your toddler any food other than milk may make the stools change into a different color immediately.

Causes of Green Stools

There are a few possible causes of green stools in toddlers. To know more about it, here are some things that you have to know about the possible causes of green stools. Take note of the symptoms too so that you know what to ponder on:

  • Medications – There are times when some medications can make the stools appear to be green. Usually, this depends on the ingredients that make up the medicine. Do remember that the change in stool color will go away over time. This is also the same for supplements especially when the supplements contain iron.
  • Dietary – Before panicking about the toddler’s green stools, think about the food that the toddler has eaten over the past few hours. When toddlers eat a lot of green vegetables, it is likely that their stools are going to be green. Green poop in toddlers usually occur after eating green vegetables like broccoli.
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease – This is the disease wherein the stools pass by so quickly that they do not have time to change in color. Usually, when the stool passes by the intestines, the colors are whitish in color, the bile from the liver would usually make the stools green then will turn into yellow and finally, the normal brown color. When the stools go so fast, the stools do not change anymore.
  • Diarrhea – This is somewhat related to the condition mentioned above. Once again, diarrhea makes the process of digestion so much faster which disables the bile to transform into a different color before it is released.
  • Food Poisoning – There are also instances when toddlers eat food products that are already expired or are not good for them since they are in an exploring mood. Green stools may indicate food poisoning and this should be given immediate medical attention.

Aside from these five possible causes mentioned above, there are still other possible reasons why toddlers experience green stools.

Other Symptoms to Watch Out For

It is likely that the appearance of green stools may also be accompanied by other symptoms that will let parents know how serious the condition is. There are some symptoms that people should watch out for though such as the following:

  • Rapid Weight Loss – There are instances when because of diarrhea or the other conditions, toddlers begin to lose an unhealthy amount of weight in a rapid time period.
  • Abdominal Pain or Cramps – There are times when toddlers experience pain together with green stools.
  • Mucus present in the stool – The appearance of mucus may mean that there is too much bile present and can signify a serious health condition.

Things to Do

Being new to this kind of thing might make some people panic because they do not know what to do but remember that with proper knowledge, things will go on well. The first thing that parents would have to do is to keep the toddler hydrated. Dehydration is one of the main causes why toddlers tend to feel weak and sluggish especially if they have been releasing water together with their stools.

There is also a tendency for the stools to take on a green color when the toddler is not getting enough water. When the toddler is suffering with diarrhea, taking in essential salt, sugar and minerals are also important to prevent the onset of dehydration.

When the toddler has fever, it is advisable to contact the doctor immediately. There are some parents who panic too much and contact the doctor at the slightest problem but most of the conditions that can come with having green stools can be harmless enough. Still, it is advisable for the toddler to get regular checkups with the pediatrician to make sure that nothing is wrong with having green poop in toddlers.

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