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Thread: 5 month old gaining little weight

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    Exclamation 5 month old gaining little weight

    Hi everyone. I'm posting because I've become worried about my son's slow weight gain. I apologize in advance for this long post, but I want to give as much info as I can.
    Here's his weight history:
    Birth: 7 lbs, 1 oz
    Dropped to: 6 lbs, 7 oz
    1 month: 8 lbs, 4oz
    2 months: 10 lbs, 6 oz
    3 months: 11 lbs, 8 oz
    4 months: 11 lbs, 11 oz
    5 months: 12 lbs, 5 oz
    So he had started and stayed in the 25% for awhile, but then suddenly dropped, and he's currently falling below the 5% (and yes, my pedi was using BF growth charts). So it's not just the low #'s I'm worried about, it's the drop
    A little BF'ing history: Started out rough. He was incredibly hungry/fussy, seemed like a nonstop growth spurt. I was lucky if he went 1 hour. Then we battled thrush, plugged ducts, flat nipples, and incredibly sore nipples even though he was witnessed as having a good latch. He did occassionaly get formula from 2-3 months. But I was pumping as well. It was never on a regular basis (just to try to regain a little sanity). But then, around 3 months things got better. He was going 3 hrs in between feedings, finally started sleeping through the night (usually), and was happy in between!
    Due to his slow weight gain around 4 months, I started to increase feedings to at least every 2 hrs (sometimes even more often) and waking him up before I go to bed for a dreamfeed (then he'll usually go 7-8 hrs until his morning feed). I've been EBF'ing since 3 months. I'm also trying to pump when I get the time. My pedi (who I've found to be very supportive of BF) suggested supplementing w/ milk I've pumped, or try a little formula (which I now want to try to avoid). I also met w/ a LC and she didn't seem super concerned. She said he looks healthy. Which he does. He has great color, chubby little cheeks & hands, I always get comments on how alert he is. And he's reaching his all his milestones (even a bit early on some). He's very active as well. He has 5-6 wet diapers a day, stools about every 3 days. The LC told me to keep doing what I'm doing, feed frequently, pump once a day, dreamfeed once. I've decided to stop my birth control which I started around 3 monts post partum. But I'm worried now that I have a low supply. How else can you tell besides low weight gain? Is there anything else I can do? I don't want to over react, but I also don't want to blow this off like it's not a big deal. Can you tell I'm a first time worried mom?! Thanks for any input, and again, sorry for the length (if You've even made it to the end )
    Mommy to Bradley, 8/2011, the love of my life

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: 5 month old gaining little weight

    What you describe doesn't sound like low supply. It sounds more like a pediatrician getting overly hung up on the chart instead of really looking at the baby. Adequate wet and poopy diaper output + happy baby + meeting milestones + continued growth = healthy baby. There's nothing wrong with being low on the charts- your baby started out relatively small and has stayed small, and that is okay. The charts aren't like a test, where anyone below the 50th percentile fails. There are healthy babies in all percentiles, and statistically speaking the are just as many healthy babies in the 1st percentile as the 99th.

    A drop in the weight percentile somewhere towards the middle of the first year is very normal, as the baby becomes increasingly mobile and devotes more calories to activity instead of packing them on as fat. Active babies tend to "lean out" faster and earlier than passive babies.

    Personally, I would ot worry. I would keep on waking the baby for dream feeds and offering the breast frequently, but I wouldn't worry.

  3. #3

    Default Re: 5 month old gaining little weight

    Well, it does look like there was a slowdown at 4 months there, but since then it seems like he's picked up again. I'm not totally sure, but it appears that he's not really that far out of the average range of weight gain at this point. I wonder if going 3 hours between feedings and sleeping through the night around months 3-4 meant he just wasn't asking to nurse enough.

    In any case, it sounds like you're doing everything right to help his weight gain. He was gaining great to begin with, so I doubt there are any problems with your ability to produce milk. My main suggestion would be to focus more on frequent nursing than to worry too much about pumping, which it sounds like you're already doing.

    So basically, just carry on. I predict the next weight check will be reassuring.

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