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Thread: Little Baby

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Little Baby

    My 6 month old went for her check up last week & they told me she was just too little. She is 25 3/4 inches and 13lbs 11 oz. She is excl. breast fed with 3 meals a day (cereal in the morning, 1 jar fruit lunch, 1 jar veggies dinner) but she just doesnt seem to put on weight. Her ped suggested that I start her on Formula at least once a day to get her weight up to standards. Can anyone make a recommendation? I do not want to give her formula. What kind of schedules do you have your 6 month old on?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    Maybe she's getting too much food and not enough breastmilk? I don't know, but it seems like 3 meals of solids is a lot for 6 months, so maybe if she ate fewer solids but breastfed more she'd gain more, since that's a more easily digested food at this age.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    As the mother of a small infant myself, I get so irritated when people, especially doctors, put so much emphasis on charts. Fortunately for me, our pediatrician is pro breastfeeding and realizes that growth patterns can be highly irregular in babies, and very individual. He pointed out to me that it isn't so much where your baby falls on the charts, but that he or she is following a curve...and not falling off the curves or plateauing for any length of time. They can plateau for a short time, say in height or weight, while the other is increasing...that is actually more common than most doctors would like you to believe. Anyway, here is a growth chart specifically for breastfed babies becuase their growth does not and can not be expected to follow the same growth charts that formula fed babies follow. I looked at the weight and according to that chart, your dd is smaller than, say average, but she certainly isn't "too small". Again, though you should be plotting over time, to really get a feel for the growth rate, because that is what is important. I have friends that are very small in stature, their baby is small (logically) and was exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months and then fed solids along with her breastmilk for another year. She weighs in at a whopping 18 pounds and is 2.5 years old. She is very healthy...nothing wrong with her at all. She just isn't made to be a big, or even average baby. Would formula have made her grow more? Probably not...she might have gained weight, but her height wouldn't have increased.

    What you need to pay attention to are wet and poopy diapers and the general mood of your baby. If she is having plenty of wet and poopy diapers and seems generally satisfied, she doesn't need formula supplements. Make sure you are feeding on demand and that she is able to nurse as much and as long as she wants. If you start supplementing with formula, it can be a vicious cycle...it will discourage your breasts from making milk, and may decrease your supply. I hope this helps. Again...I realize I am not a doctor, and that is hard to question these people, but they don't always know very much about breastfeeding.

    By the way, my dd is 12 months and weighs just over 17 pounds and is 26.5 inches tall...not that much bigger than yours!

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Bryan, Texas

    Default Re: Little Baby

    If it were me personally, I'd ask yourself several questions.

    1. what was her birth weight, lowest weight, etc?
    2. how are you and your husband and family built? is she just going to be petite?

    3. ask the doctor what growth charts they are using. the standard ones are based on the weights of formula fed babies (that tend to weigh more). a BF baby can be expected to be on a different growth curve that formula fed ones

    4. has she dropped any weight? what has her pattern been? has she always been slow to gain weight or is this recent? did she recently start crawling (which could account for a loss of calories)

    5. do you nurse first or offer solids first? do you mix BM in with her cereal? (we don't use cereal, but I'd think you could get some more BM into her system if you mix her cereal with it)

    6. HERE is a link from Kellymom that shows just how many (or few) calories there are in solid, jarried and some fresh foods.

    Here is a link about increasing your baby's weight gain

    Courtesy of Kellymom via Paint-the-moon

    This source also states:

    Ounce for ounce, breastmilk has more calories than most baby-safe solid foods and significantly more nutrients than any type of solid food that you can feed your baby. In addition, starting solids will quite possibly reduce the amount of milk that your baby is getting overall, rather than increase overall intake. One of the first recommendations for a baby who genuinely has slow weight gain is to decrease or eliminate solid foods and nurse more often.

    Breastmilk should make up the majority of baby’s nutrition through the end of the first year. At some point toward the end of the first year, most babies will gradually begin to need more iron and zinc than that provided by breastmilk alone - at that point, additional nutrients can be obtained from small amounts of solids.

    Some babies thrive on breastmilk alone until 12 months or later - as long as your baby is continuing to gain weight and grow *at his rate*, your milk is meeting his needs well.

    Hope this helps!

    For a little while my DS didn't gain any weight, but did get longer. Is she growing longer and head circumference increasing? Introducing formula may not help her increase her weight, but it can decrease and mess up your supply. I'd seriously think long and hard about giving formula if it were my baby. I nursed my DS as much as he'd nurse (which isn't much now) and offered healthy, higher calorie foods. (avocado, whole milk yogurt...etc)

    As long as your LO is gaining weight, albeit slowly, then she's growing. Also make sure length and head circumference are increasing, keep feeding on cue, and recognize that she may just be a petite baby no matter how much she eats. Also make sure she's wetting/pooping enough and meeting developmental milestones consistently.

    But if everything else seems to be working right, she's happy and content, growing (no matter how slow)...it is your RIGHT to respectfully tell the doctor that no, you are not starting her on solids. If you've gone for your 6 month check up that means you don't have to go back until 9months. Wait and see what she does in the next 3 months. She may suprise you.

    good luck and let us know what you decide.

    All over the world there exists in every society a small group of women who feel themselves strongly attracted to giving care to other women during pregnancy and childbirth. Failure to make use of this group of highly motivated people is regrettable and a sin against the principle of subsidiary. ~ Dr. Kloosterman, Chief of OB/GYN, Univ. of Amsterdam, Holland


    Mama to:
    Shiloh (5/6/06) Nursed for 13 months and Josephine (7/26/08) Nursed for 23.5 mos Currently nursing my new little firecracker, Finley Catherine, born on the 4th of July!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    Also how many times a day are you bfing. I would think about eliminating some of the solids as calorie for calorie, breastmilk is the highest. For example, rice cereal is just a filler with very little calories or nutrition. If you breastfeed her instead of giving that, she will be getting more calories. Are you offering solids after breastfeeding? Good luck. I do not think you need to introduce formula.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    I am one who refuses to go by the whole "percentile" thing. My daughter BARELY weighed 19 pounds when she was a year old. She was tiny. She was shorter than the "average" for her age. But, she was always extremely healthy...growth was proportionate...happy...

    I think if your child is happy/healthy...that's all that matters. Toss the weight/height/percentile charts out and let your child's body do what it needs to do when it needs to do it.

    Not every child can be put in a box and fit the exact measurements that the doctors say that they should.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    I'd throw all of those charts out a window if I could! Fortunately, dd's ped tends to look at trends rather than percentages.

    DD has always trended to small stature. At birth she was just 5 lbs 10 oz. At 17 months she is about 20 lbs. I get so sick of everyone commenting on how small she is ! Yes she is tiny, the other kids in her toddler room at daycare are HUGE by comparison! Must be all the growth hormones in the milk I don't know . But while those kids are running around screaming and crying, my girl is a happy,healthy curious child who just happens to be a little peanut.

    Don't feel as if you need to switch to formula to bulk up your baby. What you have in your breasts is all she needs to grow-up healthy and strong!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    From what I have been told EBF babies tend to be smaller than formula fed babies. I would ignore the charts and as the PP said go by whether you think your baby is happy and healthy. It also depends on how active your baby is. My lo is very active and my ped said at her last check-up that she was surprised she had gained any weight. The ped told me that if she hadn't gained much weight she wouldn't have been that concerned because of how active she was. She could be burning off most of the calories she is getting during the day. I would go with your gut and if you think your baby is getting enough then I wouldn't start formula.

    Good luck!!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    My lo was exactly 6 months old on Wednesday and she only weighed 12 lbs 12 oz and she is the exact same length as yours. Since she has been growing along the curve, my ped is perfectly fine with her weight. I don't think that you need to worry, especially if your lo's growth has been consistent.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Re: Little Baby

    I agree with the previous posters. I have a small child as well, and at birth she was 8 lbs 12 oz!! At a year old, she was about 18 lbs. Formula or solids didn't make one lick of difference. She's 4 now and is barely over 30 lbs.

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