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Thread: Need to help my 6m baby gain more weight

  1. #1

    Default Need to help my 6m baby gain more weight

    My baby was always at the 50th percentile but at his 6m check-up, he dropped to 10th...doctor has suggested that I supplement but I don't want to (and since he's been breastfed since birth, he won't take a bottle). I didn't have any problems with low milk supply when he was born (in fact, I think I had too much and I also have hyperactive let-down), but now it seems like maybe I'm not making enough for him? I'm already drinking the Mother's Milk tea and nursing all through the night. When I try to feed him more frequently during the day so that I can increase my milk supply, he pushes it away.

    What can I do? Help please!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Need to help my 6m baby gain more we

    Welcome to the forum, and congratulations on making it to 6 months of breastfeeding!

    It is very normal for breastfed babies to drop percentiles at around the 6 month mark. As they become more mobile, doing things like reaching, rolling, sitting, squirming, crawling, etc., they put more calories into action than they do into fat. My kids, for example, went from around the 95-100th percentile for weight to around the 75th as they became mobile. My kids' pediatrician was unconcerned. In fact, when I came in with my second baby at 6 months she turned the computer monitor towards me so I could see my kid's chart, and said "See? She's doing that thing that all my breastfed babies do. Leaning out. I think it's because breastfed babies can't have bottle hanging out of their mouths all day long."

    Another reason your baby may not have gained as much weight recently is that growth is not uniform in all dimensions at once. Smetimes a baby grows in weight and length about equally. Other times, he will spurt up in height and gain less weight, or even plateau in weight gain. This pattern of growth continues throughout childhood: one day you'll notice your kid looking a bit pudgy, and the next she'll be string-bean skinny and have grown too tall for all her pants.

    Basically, as long as baby seems happy and healthy, is being fed on demand, and is continuing to meet his developmental milestones and grow in some dimension, I would not worry and would not supplement with formula. It's not necessary and all it will do will derail breastfeeding- so to your doc for suggesting it!

    Some things you can do to increase weight gain:
    - Offer the breast more often, and try to do so in a distraction-free environment. Sometimes older babies are so busy that they play instead of nursing.
    - Nurse at night. If your baby is sleeping through, you can always wake him up and see if you can cram some extra calories into him while he's relaxed.
    - Co-sleep. Many babies who sleep with their moms wake often to eat, and that can add up to a lot of calories.
    - When you start solids, focus on the high-calorie ones. Meats, beans, whole-milk yogurt, avocado. You canals add some olive oil to the low-cal fruits and veggies.

    Seriously, I wouldn't worry! What you describe sounds textbook normal for a baby this age, and while your doc is pressuring you about weight gain now, in a few years you'll be getting praised for raising a slender and healthy child amidst the epidemic of childhood obesity.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Need to help my 6m baby gain more we

    Thank you so much! I feel so much better after reading your reply. I have been co-sleeping and trying to feed him during the night, but I guess it hasn't been helping enough. I have noticed that he's been distracted during feedings and sometimes after nursing on one side, he gets bored and won't nurse on the other. I will have to do a better job of keeping him entertained during nursing sessions.

    Thank you thank you!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008

    Default Re: Need to help my 6m baby gain more we

    Great advice from mommal already. Just wanted to share that I was advised the same for my DD she was probably 12lb or something, I don't really remember but totally normal for bf babies. I never ever supplemented.
    Proud mom of 2:
    DD 5/2008 nursed for 3 years and 3 months.
    DS born 8/2011 nursing like a champ

    Sorry for the short responses...always, always, always NAK or holding a baby

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