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Thread: baby hardly gaining any weight

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default baby hardly gaining any weight

    Hi all, I am at my absolute wits end atm. I this is the second child I have breastfed, my first now being 18months and I fed her till 8months when my milk dried up due to pregnancy. After initial latching problems with her, breastfeeding was in general pretty smoothly so I expected this one to be just the same.

    My baby is now almost 3months old and has not been gaining very much weight at all for the past month or so (only 2oz this week) and despite being seen by numerous health visitors and paediatrician no one seems to have any idea why or what I should do. I have in the past had OALD though I managed to fix that by around 1month and now just feed 1 side each feeding. She feeds every 2hrs from 5am till 7-9pm (depending on her bedtime) and has a feed around 12-1am at night so roughly 10feeds per day.

    The latest thing I have been advised to do is to express in between feeds and use that to top her up after each feed but when I tried this the feed after I had expressed she just fussed the whole time and barely had anything. She had 2oz after doin that which I didnt think was a huge amount. Please can someone help give me an idea of what I should be doing, I really dont want to have to stop breastfeeding. plus that would be just as hard as she also has a milk allergy

    Sorry if I have rambled a bit, I'm rather stressed about it all atm, having just spent 5hrs at the hospital and come away with nothing.

    Carla x

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: baby hardly gaining any weight

    Is she having adequate wets and stools?
    A weight history would be very helpful.
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: baby hardly gaining any weight

    Yes shes having a good amount of wet nappies and she poops almost every feed. Her weight gain has been:

    Birth: 2.8kgs
    1wk: 2.9
    3wk: 3.1
    4wk: 3.3
    8wk: 3.9
    11wk: 4.1
    12wk: 4.21
    13wk: 4.27

    As you can see she was gaining fine at first, and the only thing I can think of that we changed since the beginning is the OALD. I block fed (though only slightly) for a couple of weeks so I wasn't choking her every feed. Aside from her weight she's really happy and alert all the time and she looks healthy x

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: baby hardly gaining any weight

    Was she sick in that window between 4 weeks and 13 weeks? That could account for the slower growth during that period. Also, are you feeding on demand, and is baby continuing to grow normally in length and head circumference, and is she getting mobile at all (reaching, rolling?)? Does your doc feel like her development is normal, aside from slightly slowed weight gain?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: baby hardly gaining any weight

    I am feeding on demand, the 2hrs is just a rough guide she seems to follow. she did get the flu a couple of weeks ago which lasted about a week but I would have thought she would be gaining normally again by now but this week was the lowest shes put on so far. she hasnt actually been measured since 8wks but up to then she was growing steadily (though shes always been pretty small). I will be seeing my hv again later in the week so I'l ask her to measure her then.

    Development wise she is smiling, laughing and all that stuff. she loves playin in her gym and now reaches for the toys and tried to kick at them. However she isnt yet holding her head very much at all. We've been monitoring it for a while now and have been referred to a physiotherapist for it. She can hold it a little when upright and when doin tummy time but when we try 'pull to sit' it just flops back completely.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: baby hardly gaining any weight

    I hesitate to comment on whether or not anyone may need to supplement, because there is more to the picture than only weight gain-and in this case, the output-poops-are sending a conflicting message to the weight gain. But, please be assured that even if you decide that supplementation is necessary, that does not mean breastfeeding has to end! You can continue to breastfeed while supplementing, if necessary! But you will want to take steps to keep your supply up (pumping) and you may want to supplement in ways that are less likely to cause nipple or flow confusion. (An at the breast supplementer, cup feeding, paced bottle feeding are some 'alternative' feeding methods you could look into.) And if at all possible, breastfeeding should be assessed by a breastfeeding professional. In the US, anyway, doctors and visiting nurses and the like are not necessarily well versed in breastfeeding management, (some are, some are not) and moms with more serious issues will usually try to see a board certified lactation consultant.

    If a baby is not getting enough breastmilk, it's either that baby is not extracting enough milk (either because baby is nursing poorly or not nursing frequently enough,) or mom is not making enough milk, (low supply) and the baby nurses fine but there is not enough available to baby. These things can happen together, of course, but they do not have to happen together. Sometimes it's one or the other. Of course, over time, a baby who is not nursing efficiently or frequently enough will cause the milk supply to go down. So perhaps you can think about the history, and see which is more likely the place the problem originated? If it might be a supply issue, what could be the cause? Have you started taking a medication such as many birth control methods that do impact milk supply?

    What I always wonder is, if the mom can pump enough to supplement her baby with what she pumps, why not simply nurse more often? (baby willing, which they often are.) Most healthy babies are more effective than pumps at milk removal.

    If pumping and supplementing with what you pump is not working for you & baby, what about simply offering to nurse more often? Could you add another nursing session or two overnight, one or two more a day? You can't force her, of course, but many babies happily nurse 'extra' if the offer is made, and many will even latch and nurse in thier sleep. If you have been cutting nursing sessions short, (frequently this happens when other kids need our attention) you could try letting her nurse as long as she likes. Just as block nursing reduces supply, more frequent nursing will usually increase it, while at the same time baby gets more, with likely a lot less trouble for you than pumping between feedings and giving bottles. If you think the issue is definitely supply, and will not improve with more frequent nursing or baby nursing more efficiently, you could look into galactagogues (herbal or pharmaceutical.) www.Kellymom.com has good info on this subject, as does the book Making More Milk.

    3 months is a time some babies begin to get more distracted at the breast, so sometimes finding a place to nurse away from interesting things (siblings, pets, etc) might help too.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; November 25th, 2011 at 07:32 PM.

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