Author: Dr. Monica Wonnacott


Thanks M.B.G. from Utah for your question about what is normal baby poop. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t field a question about whether or not a baby’s poop is “normal.” The reality is that baby’s stool is changing constantly, so it’s hard to know what is normal and what to worry about. The Normal Transition When a baby is born, his/her gut isn’t colonized with bacteria. Bacteria are required to digest food. So, the first few stools are sticky, tar-like, and black. As an infant eats breast milk or formula, the gut will get...

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M.F. from Utah asked about her child who, when she cried, would stop breathing, turn blue around her lips, and nearly pass out. The cry or throw a tantrum, don’t breathe, turn blue, and pass out maneuver of children is actually very common. It is called breath-holding. While it can be very scary to witness, it’s generally not something to be overly concerned about. As soon as your child faints, he or she will start breathing normally, and the episode resolves. The key to making the behavior stop is how you react. When your child cries and holds his or...

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How to increase your breast milk supply

Most women at some time during the breastfeeding experience question how to increase or maintain breast milk supply. The short answer is that breastfeeding is a complete “supply and demand” experience. The body is an amazing machine; if you feed a lot (that is, breastfeed a lot), it will make a lot. How else can we explain women that make enough to feed twins or triplets? So to make more, you have to feed more. As simple as that sounds, there are a few tricks to try. Timing The key time to establish a good milk supply is at...

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Allergy Shots and Breastfeeding: Is it Safe?

It is hard to know what medications are safe to take when pregnant and breastfeeding. Ask anyone who has ever suffered from serious allergies and you know how miserable they can be without his or her allergy medications. The good news is that most allergy medications are safe to take. As for specific information about allergy shots, it appears (by the published literature) that they are generally safe. Most of my investigating into the matter has revealed that the injected allergens appear not to be transmitted into the breast milk. Consequently, there should be little risk to your baby regardless...

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Postpartum Depression vs. Baby Blues: What’s the Difference?

The birth of a baby is a wonderful experience. However, many women feel sad, anxious, afraid, or angry after childbirth. The postpartum period is a time of extreme stress with the responsibility that surrounds such an enormous life change. This stress combined with the hormonal changes of childbirth can take a toll on a new mom. It is important for new moms, their family members/support system, and healthcare providers to recognize this stress. Baby Blues Somewhere between 70-85% of postpartum women experience some symptoms of “baby blues.” Baby blues causes a rapidly changing mood (the reason a new mom...

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Dr. Monica Wonnacott

I'm a pediatrician and a mom. is my blog where parents can get the straight scoop on their child's health, largely based on my experience in the office and at home. I don't diagnose on the site, so please don't ask. These are just my opinions. Use this site as a resource. And trust your parent gut.

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