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Thread: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

  1. #1

    Default Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    Hello,
    My son went in for his 6 month check up to find he had only gained 4 oz since his 4 month check up. He went from the 21st percentile to below the 3rd. His length increased slightly (45th percentile) and his head circumference is the 40th percentile. I am exclusively breast feeding and have not attempted solids as I've read that breastmilk is the best nutritionally when there is a weight gain problem. I am going crazy worrying about him. My Doctor made us come in for a weight check two weeks later and he had only gained 2 oz (I had visited a lactation consultant, have been waking him up to eat during the night, and feeding him every hour during the day). My doctor is now wanting me to supplement with formula to get his weight up. He acts normal, is meeting milestones and has tons of wet diapers everyday. His urine is clear and he stools every few days. Why has my milk production been fine and made him grow and now he's stalled? I can't figure it out. I stay at home with him and have added some pumping sessions throughout the day. I'm now trying More Milk Plus to see if that helps. I really don't want to give him formula. What should I do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    NW OH
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    3,473

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    could you tell us his birth weight/height and current weight/height?
    Just curious on some things-has he started crawling yet? It seems common at around 6 months for weight to slow down as babies become more active.
    is he laid back or more active? How often does he nurse during the day/night?
    Do you work or stay at home? Co sleep or in seperate rooms?

    Sorry for the questions, just want to get an idea of how things are going in hopes of giving you some suggestions!
    Andrea listed some great links, here is another one that might help


    I'm Heather, SAHM to Cooper , born 1/2007
    and Bennett, our precious NICU grad born 8/2009
    and wife to Bill since 10/2003!
    We're young, but we know we can do it!
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    Here's some answers for you,

    Birth wt/ht : 7 lbs 11 oz, 20 inches
    Current wt/ht: 13 lbs 15 oz, 26 inches

    He is sitting up and rolling all over to get a round. He is and has always been pretty laid back, never cries much, just when he's hungry or tired. He was sleeping for 12 hours at night (haven't started solids yet) and nursed about 8 times a day. He has 8-10 wets a day and stools every few days. Now, from the Lactation Consultant's advice, I am getting up 1-2 times in the night to nurse and feeding almost every hour while he's awake during the day. That comes out to 12 feeds in 24 hours (been keeping a log).

    He does sleep in his own room and I'm a stay-at-home mom. My husband and i are willing to have him sleep with us - my husband is very supportive of breastfeeding and wants to stay away from formula if possible.

    He's had bottles (of pumped milk) before but pretty infrequently. The last one he had was three weeks ago. I am really trying to boost my supply, but I think my increased stress and worry isn't helping. I started More Milk Plus a day and a half ago, haven't noticed a huge difference yet, but my baby seems satistfied - as he did before. My doc wants him to "pick a curve and stick to it" - instead he has fallen below the bottom curve and has plateaued. Three weeks ago I had class all day for three days in a row. I would pump 2-3 times during those class days and get 3-4 ounces every time. I can't help but feel that my baby is just fine, he's just small. He wouldn't be peeing well and calm and content if he were being starved. He sits and plays and laughs, kicks his legs like crazy.

    Thanks for your help!!

    Oh, and I was told to NOT start solids as this would take up room that breast milk needed for better weight gain. After reading these forums, I did try to feed him some avocado last night - he would let me spoon feed it in his mouth but then he would blow raspberries and it would come spraying out. I'm willing to try anything but formula at this moment. However, I will start formula if its necessary. I just feel once I start it, I will be dependent on it forever, even if I continue to breastfeed.

    I looked at these sites that were posted and the only thing that doesn't seems to fit is that my baby has only gained 2 oz in the last two weeks (from his 6 mo check up) and that we, his parents, are average size. We aren't really small people. My baby seems fine otherwise. He just isn't gaining much weight at all.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    10,440

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*bestisbreast View Post
    I can't help but feel that my baby is just fine, he's just small. He wouldn't be peeing well and calm and content if he were being starved. He sits and plays and laughs, kicks his legs like crazy.

    Oh, and I was told to NOT start solids as this would take up room that breast milk needed for better weight gain.
    This is exactly my take after reading what you posted here. You just have a baby who isn't a heavy baby. He has almost doubled his birth weight, which is what they are supposed to do by 6ish months.

    How does your baby compare to the breastfed baby charts? http://www.suite101.com/content/grow...-babies-a65356 and click for the PDF file that applies to your child. It might not be as bad as your doctor thinks!

    All of my babies stopped growing so insanely fast after 5-6 months. They are active and just burning it all off. One of them actually dropped off the charts by like 25%, but our doc just said, we'll recheck at his next checkup (like at 9 months) and see what he's done by then before worrying about it. He had gained a whole 2 oz by 9 months but had obviously gotten longer and was doing well otherwise, so she was satisfied.

    And you are right. Solids can actually SLOW weight gain. They can help some kids who aren't nursing enough to take in the right amounts of calories -- like a super distractible nurser (IF you can get them to eat) -- but most of the commonly recommended foods don't have enough calories, fill the baby up and then he won't nurse. Avocado is a good first choice as it has a lot of fat in it, but a couple of my babies didn't like it and spat it out. Don't be frustrated -- it can take up to 10-15 exposures to a food before they will eat it.
    Susan
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  6. #6

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    Thanks for all of your input. I am going to have my milk tested for calories and am waiting for the More Milk Plus to kick in. I feel better about letting my son take his time with growing and not getting any formula at this time. It worked just fine for the first 4 months, so why not now? At least that's my hope. Thank you all for your ideas!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    18,063

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    I was just asking about solids cause sometimes doctors will push them as an easy way to gain weight. and thats just not what normaly happens.

    I wouldn't worry about testing your milk its just right for your baby!

    And it sounds like your doing the right things, feeding more often, counting diapars ect. Watching him close.


  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,361

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*bestisbreast View Post
    I am going to have my milk tested for calories and am waiting for the More Milk Plus to kick in.
    Just FYI: calorie content in human milk can vary significantly based on the time of day you pump, how you respond to pumping or a given brand of pump, and whether or not you pump regularly. So calorie testing... It's an interesting piece of data but I wouldn't necessarily take it too seriously.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  9. #9

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    I didn't realize that the calories could change throughout the day. It makes sense. Thanks for letting me know. I guess if the calories weren't enough - would I do anything about it??? I am eating a good diet with tons of almonds, eggs, olive oil, salmon and avocados.

    For the record, today my feeding pattern and nap went as follows:

    2:30 am feeding and back to sleep
    6:15 am feeding, awake and playing
    7:15 am feeding
    8 am feeding and then asleep
    9 am pumped 2 oz (1 oz from each breast)
    napped until 10:30am (would a starving baby nap like that?!?)
    10:45am feeding and awake
    12:00 noon feeding
    1 pm feeding - crabby and fell asleep on the breast and now down for another nap.

    He does nurse really fast 5-10 minutes total each time except in the early morning and first few feeds when I'm really full. When his feedings are quick, I switch at least twice letting him have both breasts and using compression at the end of the feed to get him the last few gulps. I don't have a scale to say how much he's getting but he's napping well and content after each feeding. Still peeing and soaking his diapers.

    Thanks again for all of your comments. My mind and soul are starting to relax.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    6,562

    Default Re: Doctor is pushing formula for poor weight gain

    I think he's doing just fine mama. I don't think that he would be content and soaking diapers if he wasn't getting enough to eat.
    Tracie

    Mommy to
    Lilah 10/08 nursed 25 months
    Beatrix 01/11 nursed 30 months

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