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Thread: help please - weight gain issues

  1. #1

    Default help please - weight gain issues


    Last week, my then 8 week old son was weighed, and I was advised that, as he had dropped 2 centiles since birth, I would have to bring him back in 2 weeks and if the problem wasn't rectified I would have to look at supplementing with formula.

    He was born on the 91st centile, and at 6 weeks had nearly dropped one centile. He is now around the 75th. He had put on 6oz between week 6 and 8.

    Also around week 6, I was put on the mini pill to prevent periods. This triggered a very heavy period(!) and 3 days before weighing I was given oestrogen tablets to stop the bleed. After 24 hours I noticed a decrease in supply, rang the dr and was told the tablets could cause milk production to cease. Thank you, Dr! I asked if they might prescribe anything to help my production (I had domperidone with my first son) and this was flatly refused as "sometimes milk does dry up, and we don't help with that". Insert rant about NHS pushing breastfeeding, but not helping when you want to succeed.

    Anyway, I started a mission to up my supply - fenugreek, skin to skin and feeding as often as my son would. Within 3 days I was happy that my supply had increased again as my breasts were feelng full, I had a let down I could feel, and feeds were generally better.

    The problem is, I'm still not sure son is feeding enough, and I am so scared that next week I will be told to supplement.

    He has LOTS of wet nappies. He doesn't cry a lot. He refuses to latch if he doesn't want the breast (knows his own mind?) but feeds well on his own terms. In my heart, I feel like everything's okay, but my paranoia and my NEED for breastfeeding to be successful are causing me to panic.

    I need help.

    Is there anything else I can do?

    If son decides he does not want a feed, he will turn his head, yell at me, and generally refuse. If he does want a feed, he latches well, feeds quickly and efficiently, and has both breasts. Today he is not feeding as often again, so I am worrying again.

    I had PND with my first son, and breastfeeding is the thing that really helped me recuperate - I felt that I was giving him something no-one else could. I am terrified that I am failing second son.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: help please - weight gain issues

    Welcome and congratulations on the new baby! I'm sorry you've had such discouraging turns of events, but I think you should be confident that if you have a problem, it is almost certainly fixable.

    First of all, I am not sure that there is a problem. Babies often follow one growth trajectory inside the womb and a diffent trajectory outside. There are babies who are born big and then grow relatively slowly, and babies who are born small who rapidly shoot up to the top of the charts. What is important is that the baby continues to gain weight at a consistent pace: you want to see the baby gain at least about 5-7 oz per week for the first 4 months ( see http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns...ight-gain.html). That sort of weight gain doesn't always maintain the baby in the exact same percentile he was born in.

    The 2 things that concern me most about your post are that you've been taking hormonal contraception and that you had that awful NHS botch with the estrogen tablets. The mini-pill is supposed to be safe for nursing moms, it's not supposed to impact supply, and plenty of moms take it without ill effect. However, some moms notice that the mini-pill has a negative impact on supply. If you're still using the mini-pill or any other form of hormonal contraception, I think it would make good sense to choose an alternative method until you are certain that breastfeeding is back on track. We'll be happy to critique various methods and help you pick one that is safe for breastfeeding and right for you!

    To me it sounds like you're doing everything right and that things are going well. Good diaper output, consistent weight gain, and a baby who seems satisfied are good indicators that things are going right! However, if you are told to supplement at your next appointment, let us know and maybe we can help you figure out whether or not you really need to supplement, and how to do so in a way that will help you succeed at breastfeeding if you do need to supplement.

  3. #3

    Default Re: help please - weight gain issues

    Thank you!

    I've stopped taking the mini pill, and have been given the mirena coil. Not sure how I feel about it as yet (I thought I was getting the copper one!) but my supply does seem on the up.

    Against the hv's advice I nipped out to get him weighed again today, one week on from the awful appointment, at a clinic closer to home. He has put on 10oz, and the hv today said she isn't worried - but go back again in a fortnight for my own sanity more than anything. She also said that my GP's surgery can be quite unsupportive of breastfeeding.

    On the whole I am relieved. I still have a little panicked voice in my ear, but I'm hopeful now.

  4. #4

    Default Re: help please - weight gain issues

    Wait... What's the time frame for the 10oz gain? Is that how much he's gained since your appointment last week? Because that would be FANTASTIC.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Default Re: help please - weight gain issues

    First of all, COMPLETELY understand your worry. Now let me share my story. DD was born in the 50th %tile, at her 1 month checkup she was in the 60th, at her 2 month she was back to the 50th. At 3 months (I had to unexpectedly take her in) she had dropped to the 30th. She continued this decline (despite my supply, which was just fine) until this past month where she might be leveling out in the 10th percentile. That being said, my pediatrician was not concerned AT ALL at this bombshell on the growth charts. She said as long as baby seemed satisfied at the end of the nursing session every time, not to worry. Some babies are just grow slow. I have a friend with a 16 month old who had dropped down to the 5th percentile and leveled out at around 8 months old. My pediatrician does volunteer work with failure to thrive infants at a nearby John Hopkins hospital. She does not get concerned or encourage supplementing unless there is obvious malnourishment (baby isn't satisfied after feedings, not even wet/poopy diapers, is ALWAYS fussy, etc) or they drop down to the 3rd percentile. It's very hard, but DON'T WORRY. I have felt like a failure as a mother (in regards to BF) for the past 4 months, until she finally did level out on the growth charts. It will happen, just stay positive! :

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