Originally Answered: What can I do for my two month old who is constipated?
The straining and turning red alone actually don't mean your baby is constipated, but if her stools are basically hard and pebbly then she's probably constipated. (Another sign is if your baby pulls her legs in close to her as she's straining.)
At two months you don't want to start with juices, and unless your doctor suggests it you don't even want to start with plain water -- she should be getting the proper hydration from the breastmilk/formula. If she is formula fed, however, you may want to 1) talk with your doctor (which you should do in any event) and 2) try a different formula. It's not unusual for a baby to have digestive issues with one formula and not another, in addition to which the iron in the formula could be contributing to the constipation issue (but don't switch to something without iron unless it's on the specific advice of the pediatrician).
Okay, assuming liquid is fine...a couple of things that can help:
1) Take your baby's temperature rectally. Seriously. I remember when the nurse showed me how so I wouldn't be nervous when I actually *had* to do it, and the pediatrician told me how it's actually an extremely helpful tool when a baby is constipated...it provides stimulation and can actually get things going again pretty quickly. (And sure enough, just a few minutes after the nurse took baby's temp, that little theory was proven right!) When either of my twins had any degree of constipation this was pretty much the first thing I did. No, they don't love it, but it beats straining and suffering, and, quite often, it does just the trick.
2) When babies are very young it can still help to move their legs around during diaper changes. That is, at every diaper change when your baby is on her back gently take her legs and move them as if she's bicycling. Do this for a few minutes. This stimulation also often helps move the bowels, and was the first tactic of every NICU nurse I ever knew.
3) Glycerin suppositories -- I never used them but I have read about them. As I understand it these are nonprescription and soft. Speak with your pediatrician first, of course, to be sure it's okay, but this should help to ease the way. It can also be a good idea, if you use them, to wait for your baby to give signs that she's about to "go" and then insert the suppository, to make it easier for her.
4) If she's formula fed, in addition to investigating other formulas out there, try feeding her smaller amounts of formula more frequently. This gives your baby more time to properly and fully digest the contents of her somach.
5) Messy but effective: when your baby is in a warm bath (with warm water about "chest high" for her) gently massage her belly.
As for the Karo, I don't recommend it. It's the kind of thing that has been used by lots of moms and grandmothers, but that, today, is considered to be not-such-a-good-idea because of the perceived risk of botulism. I've read several articles on this and what I've walked away with is this: while this is not the concern now that it was, say, 10 years ago, it's still possible that karo syrup contains botulism spores. Botulism can be fatal for babies -- that's why they should not be fed honey until they are over one year old. My personal feeling: I don't know whether there is a risk at all, and if there is a risk it seems to me that it must be a tiny risk indeed...but, why take the risk at all? It's not like karo syrup is something they need -- there are other ways to treat constipation.
Anyway, please talk to the pediatrician who is more familiar with *your* baby than anyone here on Y!A, but there's no reason at all not to try taking your daughter's temp rectally a few times in the interim.
Good luck, and congratulations on the birth of your daughter!