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Thread: Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

  1. #1

    Default Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

    My baby was born at 8 lbs 10 oz and was discharged at 8lbs 4 oz. at his 2 day checkup, he had lost almost a pound. 4 weeks later, he is only at discharge weight. Our doctor wants us to switch to formula only, but I know that I am producing enough. They said his poops should be yellow, but they are not consistently (they switch between yellow and green). I have increased feelings to every 2 hours and sometimes more frequently than that. He is spitting up a lot..but usually only if I set him down. I could hold him for hours but the second I put him down, its everywhere. I know that I am producing enough because if I pump him a bottle, he eats 4-5 oz. sometimes when he spits up, it comes shooting out of both his nose and his mouth and sometimes big chunks of green mucus comes out. I have tried to cut out dairy to see if that was making him upset but it didn't make a difference. He is having 8-10 wet diapers and 4+ dirty diapers per day..but seems satisfied with formula. (I've given him 2 bottles) do I just switch and hope he gains weight or is this a bigger issue that its not going to matter whether he is formula or breast fed..it will just keep going?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

    If a baby is getting enough breastmilk, baby should gain. Formula does not have more calories tham breastmilk.

    A baby would not get enough breastmilk due to 1) Not being nursed often enough (newborns typically need to nurse AT LEAST 10 OR MORE times in a 24 hour day)
    2) Not being able to transfer the milk (they nurse but do not get much) or 3) mother has low production. Or a combination.

    But a baby may be getting enough milk and not gaining. This would be due to illness, allergies, or very severe reflux. Or a combination.

    Formula does not cure illness and it sure won't help with allergies or reflux. I suggest getting a second medical opinion and seeing a IBCLC (a board certified lactation consultant) for a breastfeeding assessment

    If you are feeding your baby formula, you need to pump in order to maintain your milk production. If you are only formula feeding, try to pump at least 8 times a day. If you are doing some nursing and some formula, pump at least every time you give formula.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

    I should add that of course there are times when supplementing the breastfed baby with formula (or donated breast milk) is indeeed needed and helpful. Of course it is very concerning that your baby is not back to birth weight. I am suggesting you seek a second opinion because you seem unsure of the instruction to switch entirely from breastmilk to formula. I also do not understand why that would be needed but perhaps your baby's pediatrician explained that to you?

    Also can you clarify-was the lowest known weight 7 pounds 10 ounces and that was at the 2 day check up?
    If so, your baby has gained 10 ounces since day two, as far what the weight checks show? Were there any other weight checks after day two but before day 30?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

    He didn't explain. He said that the formula would "get the calories in him". I think on day 2 he weighed 7 lbs 12 oz then 2 weeks later he was 8 lbs then two weeks after that (which is now) he is 8 lbs 4 oz. those were all on the same scale and he was in a dry diaper every time. I have another child and he breastfed without any problems and didn't have any health problems. He is so healthy now, and I want to give this one the same chance. I am more concerned that its a bigger problem that the doctor isn't looking at
    -but by telling me to switch to formula only..i don't want my milk to dry up and have that not fix anything and think I could have been breastfeeding the whole time.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Baby is a month old and not at birth weight

    It sounds as if your doctor believes the very slow weight gain is entirely due to baby not getting enough milk (or thinking your milk is somehow 'low calorie?') If your instincts are telling you that something else is wrong then again it seems to me it would be appropriate to see another doctor and also someone (an IBCLC) who can assess breastfeeding to make sure baby IS indeed, getting enough milk from nursing. Is either possible for you? If not, can you talk to this doctor again and ask for a different option? Sometimes doctors are ok with mom pumping her own milk to give as a supplement to nursing or even simply nursing with more frequency to see if that helps with the weight gain.

    Did doctor suggest a special anti-allergenic formula? Or just any formula? Was the possibility of a dairy or soy allergy discussed? (I know you said you went off dairy and it did not help, I am just wondering.) Because while spit up is of course normal, what you describe in your op with the green mucous sounds unusual.

    If you are able to pump with a good pump with good frequency, your milk will not dry up, especially if this is just a few days. But I agree it would be very frustrating and possibly problem causing to take baby off the breast unnecessarily and again, I cannot really imagine why baby would need to stop nursing in order to get more calories. If it is simply a matter of more calories, why can't you continue to nurse and supplement until you figure out what is going on?
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; May 2nd, 2013 at 10:41 PM.

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