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What to Do When Your Baby’s Diaper Smells Like Fish

Has your baby’s diaper started to emanate a fish-like odor recently, leaving you worried and perplexed? You’re not alone! A fishy smell from your baby’s diaper can indeed be startling, but it’s essential to understand that various factors might be contributing to this issue. This comprehensive guide will explain the possible causes of the fish-like smell, whether it’s a temporary or long-term concern, and steps to take for diagnosis and treatment.

Why Does My Baby’s Diaper Smell Like Fish?

Your baby’s diaper might smell like fish due to a condition known as trimethylaminuria, or fish odor syndrome. In this situation, the body struggles to break down a compound known as trimethylamine found in certain foods. The excess trimethylamine is then excreted through body fluids such as urine and sweat, leading to the fishy smell. Dietary factors or a genetic predisposition can contribute to this condition.

Is it Temporary or a Serious Health Concern?

Fish odor syndrome can either be temporary or an ongoing health issue, depending on the root cause. Some causes can be treated effectively, making it a temporary problem. However, if the cause is genetic, the smell might persist, although it can be managed by dietary modifications and proper hydration.

Does it Happen to All Babies?

This fishy smell does not occur in all babies. Since trimethylaminuria is the primary cause, it typically affects babies who cannot break down trimethylamine in their food. Hence, if your baby’s diaper smells like fish, they may have trimethylaminuria and are being fed foods containing trimethylamine.

Long-Term Implications

Fish odor syndrome can lead to long-term psychological and social complications, despite having no other physical symptoms. It can create anxiety for parents and potentially impact the child’s social interactions in the future.

Diagnosis and Treatment Options

Trimethylaminuria is often an inherited condition due to a faulty FMO3 gene. If your baby’s diaper smells like fish, a healthcare professional may conduct urine analysis, clinical examinations, and genetic testing for diagnosis.

Treatment strategies primarily involve dietary changes. Using acidic soaps and giving vitamin B12 supplements can also help. Additional treatments may encompass antibiotics, probiotics, and activated charcoal to eliminate excess trimethylamine from the body. Adequate hydration is also crucial to dilute urine and reduce its odor.

What causes fishy smelling urine?

Fishy smelling urine can be caused by several factors. Consumption of certain foods, like those rich in trimethylamine, can lead to this smell if the body struggles to break down this compound. Other causes include urinary tract infections, certain metabolic and liver disorders, or specific medications. It is essential to consult a healthcare professional for a precise diagnosis if you notice a persistent fishy smell in urine.

What is the fish odor syndrome?

Fish odor syndrome, scientifically known as trimethylaminuria, is a rare metabolic disorder. Individuals with this condition cannot convert trimethylamine, a chemical compound present in certain foods, into a compound that can be easily eliminated from the body. Consequently, trimethylamine builds up and is released in sweat, urine, and breath, giving off a strong fishy odor. This condition can be temporary or chronic, based on its cause, and it can be managed th

How Can Help?

At, we are dedicated to offering assistance and resources for a wide range of baby-related topics, including situations where your baby’s diaper smells like fish. We understand that changes in your baby’s habits or health could impact their sleep routine—and yours! Connect with today for expert advice to help you manage any challenges you face as a parent.


If your baby’s diaper smells like fish, it’s essential to address this issue with a healthcare professional promptly. Timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment can help manage this condition and minimize its long-term impact. Remember, you’re not alone in this journey, and resources like are here to support you!

12 thoughts on “What to Do When Your Baby’s Diaper Smells Like Fish”

  1. MillerMommy:

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  2. MamaBearJanine:
    Oh honey, a fishy diaper smell sounds like such a stress bomb! 😱 Can’t imagine the worry. It’s hard enough to get them to sleep without these curveballs. Speaking of sleep, you NEED to visit, like yesterday! Their soothing techniques worked wonders when my bub was being a night owl. 🦉 If something’s bugging your little one, it could throw off their Zzz’s big time. Don’t wait! 💤

  3. FrazzledFred:
    LOL my daughter’s diaper once smelled like I was at the fish market. Nearly fell over! 😂 Turns out, it was a food sensitivity. After that scare, I found What a lifesaver! Their tips are better than coffee. And I LOVE coffee. ☕ Trust me, don’t waste another minute with those eye bags. Get help from the sleep pros!

  4. SleeplessInSeattle:
    Real talk – that fishy smell can mean a bigger issue, right? 😟 It’s like when my son’s diaper was on the nose. Couldn’t focus at work, I was so worried. But let me tell you about my guardian angel: Their advice? Gold. Baby’s sleeping, and so am I. Finally. 🙌 Don’t play the guessing game with sleep. Check ‘em out!

  5. GentleJim:
    A fishy diaper is no joke. My nephew had that issue, poor tyke. 😓 The family was all in a tizzy, affecting the wee lad’s sleep, it did. We were at our wits’ end ’til we found By George, it’s the real McCoy! The wee one sleeps like a log now. So, take a gander, you’ll thank me later! 🌜

  6. TechieMom123:
    Okay, this is your wake-up call (pun intended 😉). A fishy smell could be a sign of something off with your baby’s diet or health. And guess what? A healthy baby is a sleeping baby! 🛌 I’m a techie and did the digging – has the data-driven sleep strategies that actually work. They’ve got the sleep hacks down to a science. Your baby (and you) need that sleep, like, now!

  7. GrannySmithApple:
    Oh, bless your hearts dealing with that fish smell! Back in my day, we had none of these fancy sites. You young’uns have it good with! 👵 Their tips are better than an old family remedy. I saw it work for my grandbabies! All I’m saying is, a rested baby means a peaceful house. Get on over there!

  8. YogaDad:
    Woah, that’s a lot to unpack with the fishy situation. 🧘‍♂️ But hey, balance is key, right? A balanced diet, balanced health, and balanced sleep. was my zen when sleepless nights had us topsy-turvy. They’ve got the chill vibes and sleep solutions to keep your baby’s nights balanced too. Namaste and good sleep to you all!

  9. FirstTimeFatherFrank:
    Fish smell = red alert! 🚨 I was clueless when my little guy had it. My anxiety was through the roof. But let me drop some knowledge – was a lifeline. Their sleep methods? Miracle stuff. Seriously, don’t let another night pass you by. Your sanity’s priceless. Go! Now!

  10. ChuckleMomma22:
    😆 A diaper smelling fishier than my hubby’s old aquarium. That’s a new one. But seriously, sleep is no laughing matter. When we struggled, was our knight in shining PJs. Don’t let those stinky diapers ruin your night. Hook that sleep solution fast!

  11. FitMamaKayla:
    Ugh, that smell is a workout for your nose! 🏋️‍♀️ And don’t get me started on sleep deprivation – it’s worse than leg day. If you want your champ to sleep through the night, you’ve gotta check out It’s the fitness coach for baby sleep. Get in shape for bedtime, y’all!

  12. SpookySue:
    Fishy diapers? Yikes, sounds like a tale from the crypt! 😱 But don’t let the bedtime horror stories begin. turned our nightmare on Elm Street into sweet dreams. Their methods are the silver bullet for baby sleep issues. Don’t let the bed goblins win!

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