View Full Version : HELP - not sure what to do
As some of you know I have had problems with my 4mth old putting on weight and feeding properly. He did start putting on a reasonable amount again but I had him weighed yesterday and he only put on 205grams in 2weeks. He was born 3292gr and at 4mths is 5065grams. He is in the 3rd percentile on the chart although I know that does not really count as it is based on formula fed babies and was done in the 70's! Everyone thinks he is a newborn! He still does not feed very well and I have to feed him 2 hourly through the day but if I go out and he goes a little longer between feeds I completely stress out about his weight! If I didn't go out though I would go insane. I really want to stick with breastfeeding. I guess I just need some encouragement! He is content and farely happy most of the time. Not the best night sleeper and feeds 3-4hourly at night waking maybe 3-4times in between that but goes back to sleep with his dummy. Also at the moment there is the issue of do I start solids or not. How do I know? My maternal health nurse is against starting till 6mths and said if they show signs of being hungry feed them milk more often. I felt like saying how can I possibly feed more often than 2hours! The problem is that he was put on zantac for reflux and appeared to react to that so we don't know if it was just a side effect or an allergic reaction.I now have to go a month before getting him weighed again, don't know if I will last that long! he he I know I should not worry because he is farely happy and not losing weight again but it is so hard not too stress. I know some people would say just wean him onto formula but the problem is I don't think that will help because he is used to only having small amounts at a time because of reflux and colic and I don't think he would have anymore being bottle fed. Thanks for listening all and if anyone has any advice on starting solids or how much they should be putting on that would be great.
DD1 was also diagnosed as "failing to thrive" (what a hideous term :mad: ). I can't remember exact details, but I think it was around 6 - 8 weeks old. We had an extra visit or two with the paed because of it and the first thing I wanted to say to you was the he was happy if she gained 90 g a week - so your 100+ g/week is no cause for stress.
Our paed is VERY pro breastfeeding and packed me off to a lactation consultant to learn a few tricks. You wouldn't have thought there were all that many different ways to breast feed a baby, but lactation consultant can often suggest a tweak that will get you going in the right direction. DD1 was spending too long feeding, her feeds were a bit "inefficient", so LC suggested what she called "interlude feeding" feeding her for 5 - 10 minutes one side, 5 - 10 minutes the other side and then back to the first side. The break gives the first boob time to "redistribute" the milk to make it easier for baby to get more and finishing the feed on the first breast makes sure baby gets the very important hind milk, which is much more creamy and lower in sugar than the fore milk - hind milk is important for them to put on that weight and also to be satisfied for longer. I should probably say that both paed and LC were totally against feeding evenly from both sides for young babies as they thought that it gave the wrong balance of fore and hind milk. If in doubt, I'd recommend a LC they are worth their weight in gold :) . Anyway, this trick helped me keep DD1 weight gain acceptable (although she never gained the "average" amount of 175 g/week until we started solids at 4 months - which was the recommended age to start when she was born in 2001).
Oh and on the starting solids note: it wasn't long ago the recommended age was 4 months and I know the babies haven't changed at all, just the opinion on what is "best" (I'm a bit skeptical about medical opinion on what is best - esp as they all disagree amongst themselves and regularly change what is "best" every other year and ignore the fact that every child is an individual with different needs and characteristics, it annoys me because it robs us of our confidence in our parenting ability :mad: you can see I'm a bit sensitive - sorry for the rant). Back to the thread - I made it to 5 months with DD2 before I gave in, she was really keen, watching us eat all the time and had no sign of the "tongue thrust" reflex that makes it impossible to feed some babies until it goes away (for some kids thats 8 months +). IMO, it shouldn't harm your baby to start solids earlier than 6 months, as long as you start with appropriate food, but I guess I wouldn't start before 4 months. But you may find that he's not ready yet, and you have to let the baby call the shots there. I wouldn't have thought the formula would really help much at all - so I think you're right in sticking to BF there.
I know that this stage always seems like forever when you're living through it, but so soon your little boy will be older and these frequent feeds and weight gain worries will dissappear, you'll hardly even remember them when you look back - I promise. *hugs*
My heart goes out to you Chantell... I know how hard it is to struggle with a bub losing weight or not gaining well. I switched to formula, but wish I'd had better support to stick with bf and I'm so impressed that you have done that. It's a hard road, & you should be proud of yourself.
I don't have any suggestions or opinions about starting on solids. But I will suggest that if you're worried about his weight, and for your own peace of mind, you shouldn't have to wait a month for his next weighing. A lot of chemists have baby scales, or drop into your CHN or GP in the mean time. Sometimes there can be a slight difference in the calibration between different scales but it shouldn't be much. And if you need to use a different scale you can get around any calibration difference by weighing him now, when you have a good idea of his weight from his recent weighing. I'm not sure if that made sense but hope you know what I mean.
re weighing, I agree with Martha, you don't have to wait...
I weighed both my girls at the local chemist every week so that I was sure they were OK. I personally could not take them to the CHN, as CHN advice was different to my paed and LC and eventually you just have to decide who you're going to listen to and ignore everyone else for your own sanity.
Martha's right about calibration, but as long as you weigh them at the same place every week, you won't have to worry about that. I put my girls in EXACTLY the same clothes evey week and when I had to add a jacket because of the cold, I weighed it at home on my kitchen scales so that I could correct the total (hey some weeks +/- 10 grams made all the difference in my world) :o
I think that both xkwzit and Martha have given you great advice. I am normally an advocate for waiting until babies are 6 months for food - BUT that is only when they are gaining weight, etc, etc, etc.
My advice, for what it is worth, would be to see a lactation consultant - I agree that they are worth their weight in gold. If nothing else it might just ease your mind to have someone on your side supporting you in whatever decision you make in the end.
I know that a small gain feels like things are going badly but a gain is a gain - and sometimes babies have a few weeks of plateauing on the weight and then take off in a huge spurt. You have done really well to get this far - I know how exhausting it is to feed that often. I agree with the others - pop into your local chemist and do a weigh there so that you feel reassured along the way.
If you decide that you want to start solids, go with the gentle options like stewed pear and rice cereal and take it slowly. My youngest really wouldn't touch solids for the first month or so, which was also frustrating from another point of view, but they all get there in the end.
We went through excately the same thing. Harry wasn't putting on weight and teh CHN (who was very in tune with my parenting style) suggested that I continue with bfing but increase my supply. I did this by feeding of both sides and then expressing a little bit of milk at the end of each feed. It worked wonders and I was able to continue bfing until Harry weaned himself. Harry was also (and still is) in the bottom 3% on the charts, but I try not to worry about that anymore. My mantra was as long as he keeps following that curve then that's ok. HE kept following the 3% curve and I was happy with that. My CHN told me that that curve is there cause some children are on it, if there was no child that was ever on that curve then they won't have it. SO I just accepted that my Harry was going to be one of those children.
I have calmed down a lot about his weight and don't even bother to weigh him, but for a time there I was always weighing him.
About the solids, let your child tell you when he is ready to start.
Good luck and pm me is you want any more advice.
Thanks all for your advice. I have tried seeing a lactation consultant but she was no help at all. Her advice to me was to give him formula! I was apalled. She thought it could be a milk supply problem and her solution was formula. I ignored her advice, took blessed thistle and fenugreek (on advice from my aunt in Qld who is a midwife), drank lots of water and that seemed to help after about 4 days and I could notice the difference. I think though it has started to drop off again so I am going to go back on the blessed thistle and fenugreek and persevere once again. As I am feeding 2 hourly finding the time to express is hard. When I have tried expressing in the past I have had trouble, I have tried everything. Thanks all again
(I got my period today so am probably just hormonal!)
Charli started on solids at 5 months cos I just couldn't keep up with her demands for milk. I don't give a rats what the "experts" say about starting solids at 6 months. My GP (wise woman) said that unless you have a family problem with allergies, the extra few weeks won't make any difference.
I knew Charli was ready for solids cos she was snatching food off her brother and stuffing anything that wasn't nailed down into her mouth.
Go with what feels right to you.
My son sounds much the same as yours.... he was gaining but only a little and feeding very regularily.... he was a placid baby so i went with the flow... around 5 months i started introducing solids and boy did i see a change.... to this day i wish i had started him earlier.... he took to it straight away, rice cereal with a little stewed apple or pear for a week or so and then pureed sweet potato and so on i started introducing a new food each week.... He put on weight, drank MORE milk (BF) than previously and became a VERY HAPPY, contented and placid baby.... he slept more and generally just thrived.....
Now he is a huge lump of 16 month old craziness !!!!!
Go with what you feel is right in regards to solids, but perhaps give it a try and see if he is ready.....????
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.9 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.