Alimentary organs in babies is one of the most important problems each parent is faced with. Correct feeding positively effects the bowels function, baby’s mood and immune system development. If something worries your children, then they usually cry loudly. So, what are the reasons for intestinal colic, infantile constipations, hypovitaminosis and restless mood in babies?

Bowels and Microbes

A newborn comes from an absolute abacterial environment of the mother’s womb into the world, full of microbes. Thus a baby can’t be sterile for a long time. The bowels of infants start covering in bacteria in the process of childbirth when a baby moves along the birth canal. After the first feeding, the bowels become a habitat of microorganisms which increase in number gradually. Therefore we have 1 gm of microbes to 3 gm of baby’s feces! However, these bacteria are very healthy for a human and this phenomena is called symbiosis.

All microorganisms are divided into 2 groups. The first one is an obligate flora. These microbes should exist in one’s body as they provide for a normal digestion, strong immune system and good general state: bifid bacteria, lacto bacteria and colon bacillus. This group also includes bacteria-saprophytes which don’t harm a person at all. They are: bacteroides and enterococcus. The obligate group is the biggest one and it makes up about 97% from the total number of the bowels’ bacteria.

newborn comesThe second group is ab opportunistic flora. It is not required in baby’s bowels. Moreover, in case of unfavorable conditions, such as, reduction of the immune system, infection, stress, trauma and bad feeding, these microbes become pathogenic ones (morbific) and cause intestinal infections. There are also conditionally pathogenic microorganisms (clostridium and klebsiella) which shouldn’t be in baby’s body: staphylococcus, proteus, and candidiasis. Unfortunately, such infections cause lots of problems in a child; although, these microbes are not so dangerous in adult.

Useful Microbes

Lacto bacterium and bifid bacterium are the main protective factors to create unfavorable environment for microbes. Thus, they protect the bowels from an excess growth of conditionally pathogenic and pathogenic microorganisms. Secondly, these microbes stimulate immunoglobulin production to prevent external infections. Thirdly, bifid bacteria and lacto bacteria produce natural vitamins, such as, B6, B12 and folic acid. They also favor intestinal absorption of the most important food items: iron, calcium and D vitamin. Last they stimulate a movement function (intestinal peristalsis).

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A balance of bacteria number in one’s bowel is very important as its malfunction results in weak immune system and increases an enteric infections risk to lead to a hypovitaminosis. It may be developed in anemia through lack of iron or rachitis through calcium and vitamin D deficit.

Bowel Microflora and its Formation

So, babies come to this world with a sterile intestine. The first contact with microbes happens when they touch different objects in a puerperal room. Parturient canals are full of lacto bacteria and bifid bacteria with colon bacillus. Thus a baby is already infected with these microorganisms. However, this number of bacteria is not enough and the immune system of an infant is still maldeveloped to fight with new microbes. That’s why a baby should be placed on the mother’s stomach at the first minutes of its birth to get a part of her microflora and be protected from other microbes.

 to put a baby to the breastIt is very important to put a baby to the breast to get the first drops of foremilk as it lays the foundation of the child’s health. The foremilk contains different protective factors to favor the strengthening of baby’s immune system and intestine microflora: bifidogenic factors which help to develop the required bifid bacteria. They create favorable conditions for growth and reproducing of bifid bacteria and form a normal microflora of the bowels in the first 2 hours  after birth. Moreover, the foremilk contains immunoglobulins, being produced by the mother as a reaction for infections she had during her life. Thus, we have a specific vaccination to protect our babies within their first year.

It’s proven that children who get the breast as soon as they come to this world can overcome the process of intestine microflora formation much easier and they rarely have any dysfunctions of the microbe flora. They also put on weight perfectly.

During the next 3-5 days a bowels infection growth of different microorganisms happens. As a result we can observe a transient (temporary) dysbacteriosis.

The main symptoms of such malady are unstable liquid stool with a big amount of mucus and abdominal cramps and regurgitations. But by the end of the first week the next phase of microorganisms’ lifeq comes. In this time bifid bacteria and lacto bacteria force out other microbes.

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Bowels transient dysbacteriosis is not a disease. In case the next negative factors are absent (prematurity, long-term antibiotics intake and infectious diseases) then this phase comes to an end by the second week of baby’s life. However, to form a normal microflora a set of conditions is required: to put a baby to the breast within the 1st hour after the birth, breast feeding only during the 1st month and romming-in. If a woman doesn’t follow these rules, then there is a risk for a baby to get a real dysbacteriosis development, alimentary allergy, digestion malfunction and weak immune system.Dysbacteriosis in babies

Dysbacteriosis in newborns

In case the bowel’s microflora is infected then a baby is restless: problems with sleeping occur because of attack-like intestinal colics appearing in a baby in 1.5-2 hours after feeding. Such symptoms are usually accompanied by acute gas-formation and tummy-rumbling, vomiting and regurgitation.

A dysbacteriosis can be also accompanied by a malabsorption syndrome of nutrition support in thin intestine. It results in diarrhea (foamy feces with acid or putrid smell); a baby doesn’t put on enough weight. As far as this infectious disease is a secondary malady through some other problem of the body, (intestinal infection, antibiotics intake, prematurity and incorrect feeding), the syndrome of malabsorption aggravates the course of this disease.

Some babies start suffering from intractable constipations because of a deficit of bifid bacteria which stimulates a contractive activity of the bowel.

The dysbacteriosis is divided into compensated and non-compensated.

A baby doesn’t have any symptoms under the compensated dysbacteriosis. Only a professional examination may diagnose a dysfunction of microbe clinical presentation.

Dysbacteriosis treatmentThe non-compensated dysbacteriosis is attended by the same clinical signs. In case children complain about their health then it’s necessary to start the most effective treatment as soon as possible.

As to the first case, parents are puzzled because they don’t understand whether a treatment is required or not. The dysbacteriosis in infants should be diagnosed and treated in any case because such dysfunction of a bowel is temporal and unstable. This imbalance, caused by dentition, vaccination, overcooling, bottle feeding, simple cold and stress, has to be investigated individually.

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Treatment and Preventive Measures of a Dysbacteriosis

One of the principle moments in the dysbacteriosis treatment is a breast feeding. Any baby should get the breast milk as much as possible within the first year. This rule is required for infants with the dysbacteriosis as the foremilk contains a lot of agents to favor a normal microflora and it protects an organism from conditionally-pathogenic microorganisms. It provides a balance between bifid/lacto bacteria, colon bacillus, it also favors a healthy digestion and prevents any allergic reactions from developing.

In the cases where breast feeding is impossible then it’s necessary to give preference to adapted mixtures, rich in protective factors: mixtures that contain probiotics for better intestinal uptake and healthy microflora reproduction. All these mixtures should be prescribed by a doctor!

breast feedingAfter a bacteriologic feces investigation a microflora correction should be done.

The first stage is a conditionally-pathogenic microorganisms’ growth reduction. It can be reached by means of special immune preparations, such as, bacteriophages which absorb and dissolve microbe cells or by means of intestinal antiseptics to define a sensitivity of conditionally-pathogenic microbes to a specific bacteriophage or antibiotic. Of course it’s more preferable to choose the bacteriophages. In general, it’s better to use the ones which don’t affect the general state of a patient.

The second stage of the correction is to create a healthy flora by means of bifid/lacto bacteria, colon bacillus and vital activity products. A treatment course should be prescribed individually.

Probiotics contain indigestible substances to favor the healthy microflora growth: lactulose, oligosaccharide and fatty tissue. These components also stimulate intestine movement function which helps to solve constipations.

So, how can you prevent the dysbacteriosis development in babies?  When a woman starts planning her pregnancy, she should be examined by a gynecologist to define and treat any flora dysfunctions of genitals in time. Fortunately, there are a lot of preparations to help in this case. Also, it’s necessary to watch your diet and avoid antibiotics intake. A woman should conduct a healthy life-style!

Another piece of advice is to learn about the rules of your future birthing center: whether they practice a rooming-in and first putting baby to the breast.