Low weight gain

Breastfeeding does not always work out, this is a place to discuss your situation and feelings

Low weight gain

Postby MummaMA » Tue Oct 05, 2010 9:59 pm

I only fed my 1st DD for 2 weeks as shes was screaming constantly. We put her on formula and shes been happy ever since :)
My 2nd DD is nearly 8mths, she was born FEB 13th 2010 3.6kg and now is 6.04kg.

I have seen Paeds and docs about her weight gain. She has had some good weeks but as soon as she starts to get going she ends up with abug or something and that effects her gains. It slows the weight gain down to around 70gram a week. Example she gained 330grams 1 week then 2 weeks later she got rotavirus and has slowed down to 70grams again for weeks now.

She has been on solids since 4mths and has slowly been increased as time has gone on.

she is eating like a horse.....4 -5 breastfeeds a day...300mls formula and 3 x solids about the size of a golfball 1 x ( fruit farex and formula ) 1 x weetbix and formula and 1 x meat and veges farex and formula......they say with this amount of food she should be gaining alot more. She has been on same daily routine for the BIG weeks and now but shes still ike a doll.

Can anyone help, my DH is suggesting I put her on bottle, but I dont know what to do? Shes capapble of gaining but then on the other hand shes so tiny and still in 000 clothes. SHes sleeping thru the night pretty much since birth and is reaching milestones.
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Postby ames » Wed Oct 06, 2010 12:20 am

Hi MummaM

It sounds like you're doing everything you can for your daughter! Low weight gains can be very worrying, especially when its being going on for so long. Breastmilk and/or formula are meant to be a babies main food for the first 12mths as they are much more nutrient dense and kilojoule rich than solid foods. It could help to possibly slightly reduce the amount of solids and replace with extra feeds.

Hopefully someone with more suggestions will be along soon.

Don't forget that you can ring the helpline 24/7 and go through things with a counsellor. the little ad panel on the top right side has the info.

Hang in there, you're doing a great job!
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Postby Grace » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:11 am

Can you look at your genetics? Are you slight / lean / small framed in your familes?
I am very tall yet small framed (small feet, wrists, fingers etc) and my babies have all been long and lean babies with small feet, hands etc.
Another thing to bear in mind is that weight can begin to level out quite dramatically around 5-6 months.
For example my DD has only gained 0.8 of a kg between 6 and 11 months of age. Between 6 and 9 months she stayed the sameweight and is only starting to gain again now! Yet she has grown in length and is meeting milestones as expected.
My thought would be to see a breastfeeding supportive Paediatrician just to check your LO ticks all the boxes health wise. Good luck. :)
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Postby izzabellasmummy » Sat May 05, 2012 1:47 pm

just remember 'mother's instinct is usually right' the saying is true. my baby is 4 months and on top ups of ebm and abm and i dont feel guilt because its whats right for us :] dont always take others advice your the mum and you know your baby best YOU carried her for 9 months and you continue to nuture her we all worry and thats nature shes gaining and growing i strongly advise you to look at your bubby and ask yourself is she happy content, some growth, meeting milestones if yes then just go with it you know best remember that and pat yourself on the back for what you've done :]
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Postby Ronale » Sat May 05, 2012 2:54 pm

Hi MummaMA, It sounds like you are doing everything you can to help your daughter increase her weight. I've just had a look at the growth charts and can see why you might be worried. But as others have said, sometimes babies just reflect their genetics... is this something that has been discussed?
You said that you've had doctors and paediatricians looking at her, have they looked at any underlying reasons for why she might not be gaining weight? Sometimes it doesn't matter how much, or what is fed to a baby because they have an underlying condition they are unable to gain weight. These can be quite simple, but can sometimes be very complex and take some time to work through.
Changing to 100% formula may help her gain weight, but it might not. How would you feel if you made the change and it didn't help? That might be somewhere to start...
You're doing a great job, and no matter what happens with breastfeeding I know you'll make a choice that's right for you, your daughter and your family.
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Postby Nedsmum » Sat May 05, 2012 6:07 pm

If your baby has been sick (especially something like rotavirus) you have to take that into consideration - my kids never gained any weight when sick, and if they lost weight for a week it might take another week for them to stabilise and another 4 weeks after that to 'catch up' again...

Basically, if your child has been sick (and rotavirus is a nasty one) then it doesn't matter how much you feed them, they aren't miraculously going to put on weight...and it's got nothing to do with your milk.

Also, even the small amount of breastfeeding you are doing will give them antibodies and protect their digestive tract - your child may actually get more illnesses and be sicker for longer if they are not breastfed - I've met plenty of mums who were told to try 'bottle' feeding instead of breastfeeding and later found out their child had an underlying medical condition which would have been helped by breastfeeding for longer.

I have some standard questions that I ask a lot:

was bubs born early, late, on time ?
were they induced ?
were their complications with the birth, pregnancy, after the birth ?
What illnesses has the child had ?

I would take a 'base' line before the rotavirus - what was her weight the week that she put on 330g - that'd be the 'peak' weight. Then wait and see.

One of the 'side-effects' of starting solids early is that the baby's weight gains slow down...that's because the solid food can replace breastmilk too fast - breastmilk is much more easily digested than solids - are you seeing the solids coming out just the same as they went in ?

If you are not breastfeeding at all in the night, then I'd expect bubs to need that much food during the day - most breastfed babies at that age would be having more like 6-8 breastfeeds in 24 hours, including once or twice overnight.

I'd be more inclined to think that she's struggling to recover from the rotavirus and I'd be looking at the 'output' to see if the baby is still having trouble digesting their food. Do you breastfeed before/after a solid meal ? Could you express some breastmilk and mix that with her solids instead of using formula with the solids - breastmilk has digestive enzymes in it that actually pre-digest the food for the baby - I'd expect that to help a lot with the gastro problems she's had.

My son got E-Coli at around 20 months and lost 900g in one week, and took at least 4 weeks to regain that 900g.... those gastro illnesses really wipe kids out. I went to the doctor so many times, but there's nothing they could recommend - in fact, the paediatricians at the hospital were very impressed that he was still breastfeeding, because if he wasn't they would have had to put him in hospital on a drip because he wasn't able to digest any other foods at all.

What does the Paed say ? When you say 'sleeping through the night' is that 6-8-10 hours without any food/drink ? Would you be willing to add a 'dream feed' (a breastfeed right before you go to bed) to your routine ?

Personally, I'd not leave a baby that was not gaining well for more than 5 hours between a feed. - the 'standard' in childcare is to offer food/drink every 2 hours and never more than 4, a typical pattern for a bottle-fed baby would be a bottle at 5-6am, 'breakfast' at 8:30, more milk after the solids, lunch at 11:00, another bottle maybe around 1-2pm, snack at 3:30, dinner or another bottle around 5-6pm and another bottle in the late evening - 8pm or so - does that sound similar to what you are doing ?
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Postby Esther » Sat May 05, 2012 7:47 pm

Errr, the OP is two years old now....

Just sayin' :-.
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