How Often Should a Toddler Poop?

How often should a toddler poop?
ByMichael Lee, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics at UT Southwestern Medical Center and pediatrician at Children’s Medical Center Dallas
March 2, 2017
Hero Image

When it comes to toddler poop, consistency counts much more than frequency. Some toddlers poop once a day, and that’s fine. Others poop every three days or so, while still others poop three or more times per day.

Instead of focusing on the number, take a look at the consistency. You want to see “a reasonable amount that’s reasonably soft and does not cause bleeding,” says Michael Lee, MD, a pediatrician at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas. You don’t want to see very small, hard, ball-like stools that may or may not cause bleeding with defecation — those are signs of constipation. Very runny, frequent, watery poops are a sign of diarrhea.

If you do notice signs of constipation, try cutting back on the milk. Milk (and other dairy products) are often the chief culprit in toddler constipation. Substitute water or juice for some milk, and your toddler may soon find relief. If not, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

If your child has diarrhea, he probably has a stomach virus. Offer fluids frequently to prevent dehydration. Avoid sugary juices or sodas, though, as the sugar in the drinks can actually increase the number of stools. Water and milk are fine. If your child is up to it, he can also have small amounts of soft, bland foods such as crackers, rice and yogurt.

Plus, more from The Bump:

Related Video
celebrity Kristen Bell at home cheering

Kristen Bell Says Mom-Shaming Pushed Her to Potty Train Her 5-Year-Old

profile picture of Nehal Aggarwal
Nehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor
actress kristen bell during an interview

Kristen Bell Shares Her 5-Year-Old Daughter Wears Diapers

profile picture of Nehal Aggarwal
Nehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor

Potty Training Dos and Don’ts

profile picture of Sona Charaipotra and Elena Donovan Mauer
Sona Charaipotra and Elena Donovan Mauer
Little girl uses bathroom and learns how to potty train

Watch a Preschool Teacher Use Balloons to Teach Kids How to Wipe

profile picture of Nehal Aggarwal
Nehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor
jamie otis with her husband and daughter at the beach

Jamie Otis Shuts Down Troll Who Shamed Her for Potty Training Tactics

profile picture of Laurie Ulster
Laurie Ulster
Contributing Writer
upset toddler with sitting with his head down

Pregnant Mom Gets Ticket After 3-Year-Old Has Bathroom Emergency in a Parking Lot

profile picture of Stephanie Grassullo
Stephanie Grassullo
Associate Editor
Article removed.