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Thread: Weight gain issues at 9 months

  1. #1
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    Default Weight gain issues at 9 months

    My son is 9 and a half months old, and his weight seems to remain stand still for the last 2 months. I was so glad when he was gaining good weight until 2 months ago (20 lbs and 3-4 oz). He has grown in length though at the same rate as before, but not in his head measurement. I am breastfeeding him, which too has been a bit of a challenge since he is so active during the day (night time feedings are easier, and I would say he gets about 6-7 feedings/24 hrs) with rice cereal once in the night. Rice cereal is the only thing he likes among solids. Around a month and a half ago I started giving him rice cereal 3 times a day, when he just stopped nursing during the day. So I cut it down to once in the night (about 3 tablespoons) mixed with breastmilk. I have tried all jar foods, and he just doesn't like it and I hate to force him. I tried cooking carrots, cubing it and giving it to him - he does like to play with it, but just swallows them all and the carrots come out as cubes in his diaper! So I am scared of giving it to him. I gave him sweet potatoes which he seemed to like, that seems to give him gas. I have also tried cooking apples and giving it to him, mixing the cooked apples with rice cereal and some sugar too. Nothing seems to charm him. He likes to sit next to us during dinner but doesnt care for the food that we each so much. He is crawling a lot and wants to stand up at the very chance he can get and this probably burns calories. I should also mention that he had caught cold 3 times in the last 2 months - which made it pretty rough in feeding him at those times. Can anyone please suggest what I can do to increase his weight, and what I can do to get him to like the variety of solids other than rice cereal? Looking at the other posts, I find moms here to be so helpful - I am glad to have found this forum, and hope I can get some helpful advice!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    Getting a cold can affect his appetite, and if he is sick a lot he has to use extra energy to fight infections so that could burn up more calories.

    If you watch for his cues, unless something is seriously wrong, you shouldn't have to force a baby at this age to eat. You can't really force but you can encourage. They are unique individuals and will take what they need if they are allowed to nurse on demand, and if he doesn't want solids there is no need to worry at this age.

    Weight gain tends to slow down a lot as the baby ages. As long as the baby seems happy I would not worry or push solids. You can keep trying but he may not eat a lot. I have a friend whose son didn't start a lot of solids until 18 months.

    Rice cereal is basically nonnutritive starch, not really good for the baby. But you might try mixing it with the sweet potatoes and then other veggies, fruits, pureed meats, etc. if you want to trick him into eating them since he seems to like the rice cereal.

    My son also liked sweet potatoes and peaches at that age.
    Don't worry too much if he has gas - babies get gas from time to time. If you are positive it is just from a certain food there is no harm in stopping that food, but remember that babies have to adapt to new foods, and the gas may get better as he adjusts to it. It's not necessarily a food allergy if the baby has gas.

    Weight is only one indicator of health, and not necessarily will bigger mean better. When we get older we always strive for leaner, there is nothing wrong with a lean baby. Just because he stops gaining weight at 9 months does not mean there is anything wrong. Check back in a few months with the doc to see if he has grown at all before you get too upset about it. You want to make sure he is still urinating at least 6 diapers a day (cloth diapers) and pooping at least every few days or once a week even.

    Just for comparison, My son was in the 50th percentile at his 9 month check up (weight) and at 12 months had dropped to the 25th. At his 12 month checkup he was about 2 pounds heavier than 9 months, and now he is 18 months old and weighs only about 3 pounds more than at 12. He is 25 pounds, birthweight 7 lbs 10 oz. I don't know what percentile he is in now but I don't really worry about that - I just try to make sure he nurses frequently enough to keep him happy and keep my supply going. And I let him eat whatever foods he likes that are healthy, and even a few unhealthy treats occasionally!

    It's good that you are doing night nursing, that has been a godsend to my supply maintenance! I don't recommend filling a baby up with rice cereal to substitute a meal of breastmilk. It is a little concerning that you said he won't eat during the day - do you mean he won't eat as much, or at all during the day? I know my son sometimes doesn't eat a lot at all during the day for a few days, but then it picks up again. But he is also a lot older. My son gets the majority of his nursing in during the night and morning in our bed.

    If you want to nurse up to a year or longer you need to make sure and keep stimulating your breasts to keep supply going. Try to make sure you are feeding during the day some, if you want suggestions on how to encourage that, I recommend trying babywearing, taking a bath together, napping together, or just getting quiet time together during the day. See www.wearyourbaby.com
    Last edited by amyphilo; January 27th, 2006 at 04:23 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    20 pounds at 9 1/2 months! That is GREAT, me wee one is 8 1/2 months and just hit 16! As long as he is wetting, pooping and happy I would not be too concerned. Happy nursing!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    Thanks for the response. Amyphilo, thank you so much for the detailed response and making me feel much better. I too am now beginning to think one possible cause for him not gaining weight must be the cold.

    Yes, I meant to say he won't eat as much during the day. If he takes 2 naps in the day, I sneak feed him after rocking him when he is dozing off during those times! If he takes only one nap, then I have to cluster feed him before and after his nap. One feeding right before he wakes up. His dinner nursing has become an impossible task, so for that feeding I pump, and give it to him using a dropper, part of it with rice cereal. Sometimes I wonder if this is just me, or does any one else experience this too, and how they are able to work around it!

    After reading your note on rice cereal, I am going to try reducing the cereal amount to 2 tablespoons. I cannot not give it to him since he kind of 'expects' it now and keeps waiting for it! I will re-try the sweet potatoes too and see how it goes. Thanks so much once again!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    I also wanted to say that sp also made my son very gassy. He also loved the rice cereal,but after a while even mixed with fruit is made him very constipated. About the feeding, my wee one is so busy that I have to feed him in a dark room with a white noise machine to get him to eat, also like you said right before naps seems to work best.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    You might try some of the other cereals. I would start introducing him to mashed bananas and avocados. I have very lean children and they all love avocados. Avocados contain many healthy fats and are calorie dense. If he doesn't want you to feed it to him you can cube or slice it and let him finger feed. I also like to start the Stoneyfield Farm Organic Yo Baby Yogart at this age. If spoon feeding is what he really resists I would just start offering him mashed bits of whole foods from your meals and have him join you at every meal and snack. If he fusses let him nurse or get down to play.

    momuvseven

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    So great to hear that I'm not the only one. My son started getting "too busy to nurse" during the day at 5 1/2 months. He was already over 100th percentile for his growth at 20lbs. Since then he has only gained a few ounces, and after several trips to the pediatrician just to check him out, he's fine, happy, and having plenty of wet/dirty diapers. He has grown quite a bit in length and is much more active, wanting to stand all the time. He is now 6 1/2 months and it is a struggle to get him to nurse during the day also. Reading these messages makes me feel like I'm doing okay after all. Thought it was something wrong with me! My DS will nurse only when very sleepy before and during/after naps during the day. Recently however I have discovered two other ways to encourage nursing/winding down. I wear him an ERGO carrier and nurse him while he watches a DVD, then also nursing him on the floor SL during a playbreak. Sometimes he will nurse a little then for a recharge. The white noise idea sounds interesting. Maybe I will try that. We co-sleep and he usually nurses 2-3 times during the night still, but sleeps from 8-7:30am. He is not that interested in solids yet, and I was worried about the weight gain since he grew so much the first 5 months. But since he's happy and healthy, I'll go at his pace I guess!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    Quote Originally Posted by momuvseven
    You might try some of the other cereals. I would start introducing him to mashed bananas and avocados. I have very lean children and they all love avocados. Avocados contain many healthy fats and are calorie dense. If he doesn't want you to feed it to him you can cube or slice it and let him finger feed. I also like to start the Stoneyfield Farm Organic Yo Baby Yogart at this age. If spoon feeding is what he really resists I would just start offering him mashed bits of whole foods from your meals and have him join you at every meal and snack. If he fusses let him nurse or get down to play.

    momuvseven
    Thank you for these suggestions. He is however allergic to avocados and banana gives him constipation (+ a lot of black threads in his stools - I have never been able to find another person who had a similar experience with the bananas). He does like the baby yogurt though. I have started him on the yogurt and sweet potatoes these days. These are the only ones he likes so far. One day I mixed sweet potatoes with squash and that was it - he refused to take the sweet potatoes too - he is very clear about what he wants! So I switched back to just sweet potatoes the next day and he is back to taking it now.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    Oh my goodness!! my ds had the black strings also!!!!! I freaked out, thought is was blood. And you know it was bannans also. He has had them since then ( about a month later ) and was fine. So crazy that you had the same experice

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Weight gain issues at 9 months

    Did he start crawling about the time he quit gaining? It's reasonable to expect weight gain will slow when they start to burn more calories with activity - especially those that love it so much they hate to slow down to eat!

    Good Earth makes a brown rice cereal that probably is less likely to constipate. Once fruits are introduced, vegetables seem to be an especially hard sell. I was thinking maybe this time I'll start making a fresh vegetable every night for the family and just offering the baby some mashed - and later cubed - surely she'll eventually try some when she's ready and grow to like or even love some of what she tries.

    Yams are not as profoundly nutritious as Sweet Potatoes, but they are much sweeter and appealing to my kids and, like carrots, loaded with beta carotene. They are also MUCH tastier baked rather than microwaved or boiled. It brings out the natural sugars and aids digestion. Same with carrots.


    (You can see the black strings in banana bread, too.)

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