Making number 2 your number 1 priority

Making number 2 your number 1 priority

Lauren Dankner, MD
Lauren Dankner, MD

It’s a topic that can be embarrassing to discuss and therefore is often avoided.

But it can also be necessary to talk about — namely, your child’s bowel movements and possible gastro issues.

As part of Valley Health System’s new podcast, “Conversations Like No Other,” Lauren Dankner, MD, a pediatric gastroenterologist at Valley, recently tackled the subject of children’s poop, what could be worrisome, parent concerns, and more.

Dr. Dankner said when it comes to infants, the frequency of bowel movements can vary tremendously.

“It varies for infants and depends on what they’re feeding as breastfed babies can stool differently than formula-fed babies,” she said. “It can range anywhere from every time they feed to once a week. As long as there are no alarming symptoms” then “typically all of those can be normal.” For older kids, she said along the lines of every one to two days is normal.

Dr. Dankner also discussed how parents should know when a gastro symptom may be from an illness. “Major red flags would be blood in the poop, persistent or intermittent diarrhea, any changes related to weight loss or not growing well, and diarrhea waking them up from sleep or affecting their appetite or not allowing them to stay hydrated. Those would be reasons to seek care and see a doctor,” she said. “If it’s a sort of a one-time episode of diarrhea or the kid is constipated for a couple of days, usually that’s not a major emergency.”

“Conversations Like No Other” is an audio podcast that goes beyond conventional and everyday health topics to go deeper into the personal issues facing men, women, and children of all ages. Each episode features a 15–20-minute interview with at least one Valley Health System doctor or professional who will share professional and personal insight on topics that are personal, delicate, and very relevant.

Dr. Dankner’s episode and others are available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, iHeart, TuneIn, and Google Podcasts. You can also listen at

For more information about pediatric gastroenterology at Valley, please visit or call 201-389-0815 to make an appointment.

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