12 Reasons Why Your Breastfed Baby is Not Gaining Weight As Expected?
And which weight gain products can help you.
Every parent of a new born infant worries about their child’s development. Being a new parent, managing your baby’s weight gain can be a little more difficult to understand than you’d expect. Most babies who are able to latch and feed properly gain weight in an expected pattern. But, even though you are breastfeeding, your newborn may not gain weight satisfactorily. There are many reasons for this.
Adequate nutrition is essential for the proper growth and development of your baby. All babies are special and develop at their own pace. But weight gain should follow a fairly constant pattern. Newborns can lose up to 5-10% of their birth weight during first week and by the time they are 2 weeks old, they should regain the weight they lost. If your baby follows the average weight gain trends, he or she should be approximately double their birth weight by the first three to four months after birth. If you feel your baby isn’t gaining enough weight, you should consult your baby’s doctor.
Some of the common causes for inadequate weight gain amongst babies are:
Find below 12 Reasons Why Your Breastfed Baby is Not Gaining Weight As Expected.
1. Improper Breastfeeding
Some babies have a difficulty latching on. Pay attention to this and ensure that your baby can latch properly so that he or she receives enough nutrition. Some babies may develop natural problems which make breastfeeding problematic. This includes burping, falling asleep while feeding, colic and inconsolable crying. Talking to lactation consultant may be helpful as they can help with positioning, holding and adjusting your baby properly to ease the feeding experience.
12 Reasons Why Your Breastfed Baby is Not Gaining Weight As Expected
2. Losing Track of Scheduled Feed
This is one of the most common reason why babies do not gain weight. Simply breastfeeding is not enough; your need to breast feed your baby on a timely schedule. New born babies should be breastfed every 2-3 hours throughout the day. Missing out on the schedule can be a reason for your baby to not gain weight. To ensure that you do not miss out on a feed, try and make a schedule.
3. Too-Short Nursing Sessions
Each breastfeeding session should be approximately eight to ten minutes long. This is how long it takes your baby to take in enough milk. As your baby gets older the time needed is reduced. If you breast feed for shorter durations, your baby will not be able to get adequate nutrition. This will keep him or her from gaining weight.
4. Low Milk Supply
Most new mothers produce up to 900ml of breast milk per day y the tie the baby becomes 1 month old. However, some mothers face a problem of delayed or inadequate natural milk production. So, after the baby is born breastfeeding becomes difficult. The good news is that this milk supply can be improved easily with proper nutrition.
Thus, it is important to mothers to eat well balanced meals. Milk production may also be hampered by certain medical conditions. If you think you are not producing enough milk for your baby, consult your doctor.
Oral Issues- There are many other physical issues which affect the baby’s ability to breastfeed. An arched palate, tongue tie or other mouth problems can create latching issues in babies and should be treated as soon as possible. Some of the issues to watch out for are:
- Tongue tie
This refers to a condition wherein the frenulum of the tongue (the small fold of tissues which connects the floor of the mouth to the tongue) is too short and tight at birth.
- Cleft lip
This is a division in the upper lip. Babies with a cleft lip may also have cleft in the roof of the mouth. Apart from feeding this condition also makes it difficult for a baby to swallow, speak and may cause chronic ear infections. This problem is usually noticed at birth and must be addressed as soon as possible.
- Unusual Palate
A baby may be diagnosed with a high palate if the roof of the mouth is shaped in a manner which is considered too high or narrow. This may be a birth defect or develop over time.
- Lip Tie
Lip ties are hereditary and occur when the frenulum is too short. This reduces the mobility of your baby’s lips. If you feel your baby is not able to latch properly despite all your efforts and makes an unusual sound while feeding, go for a checkup. A simple procedure can rectify this problem easily.
- Tongue thrust
This is a condition when baby pushes things out of mouth with his or her tongue. Thus, instead of taking your feed, your baby may push the nipple out of his mouth. It is often hereditary. It may also be caused by thumb sucking, an allergy or bottle feed. Lactation consultants can help deal with this issue.
Baby crying more than usual
Jaundice is common in most newborns. It occurs within 2-3 days after birth and is identified by the yellowing of skin and whites of the eyes. If this is detected, your doctor will want to take regular blood test to measure the amount of bilirubin in blood and treat the condition accordingly. This condition may develop if the baby does not get enough milk. In the early days, breast milk is necessary not only for nutrition but also to develop the digestive system and improve bowel movements. It also helps regulate bilirubin levels.
Most women experience pain and other types of discomfort after childbirth. These issues can be treated with medication. Doctors prescribe medication and dosage depending on the case and symptoms. Changing the medication or dosage without consulting your doctor can not only affect you but can affect your baby as well. Some medicines can cause side effects, allergies or pain and discomfort.
Check with the doctor immediately and get the proper diagnosis. Some medicines recommended by the doctor can also make mothers drowsy. Since your baby receives all his or her nutrition through breast milk, the type of medication you take can affect your baby’s ability to gain weight.
Any illness that affects a new born or new mother can affect the feeding pattern. Diarrhea and vomiting are common problems faced by new born babies. This can make your baby lose energy and become too sleepy and lethargic to latch and feed properly.
New mothers are also prone to illnesses which affects the supply of breast milk. Clogged milk ducts, cracked, bleeding and sore nipples are also problematic as they can be very painful and make it difficult for mothers to feed their baby.
A little spit up after a feed is normal but some infants vomit out all the milk they have ingested after a feed. This is termed as reflux. Reflux not only makes them lose some milk from feeding but the acid from the reflux also irritates the throat and esophagus. This can make it painful them to breastfeed.
9. Neurological Issues
Neurological issues as Down syndrome can make a baby lose the ability to latch and breastfeed properly. Children with Down syndrome has low muscle tone which affects their strength, oral muscles and results in weal sucking, latching, swallowing, lip closure etc.
It’s a challenge in the beginning but this should not be a reason to stop breast feeding. Breastfeeding is even more important for children with such problem as the antibiotics in breast milk help build immunity and are easily digested.
10. Premature Baby
Being born premature can also be a reason for slow weight gain. Smaller babies born before 37 weeks may lack the energy or strength to breastfeed and latch for a longer time. So due to the low latching time they get less than the needed amount of milk to grow. They are sleepier and may also suffer from jaundice or dehydration which in turn makes breastfeeding more difficult.
11. Pain with Birth Injury
If the baby has any pain because of an injury during birth or any problem such as a thrush infection in mouth, the baby may feel discomforted and may not be able to breastfeed properly. This will eventually slow down the pattern of weight gain.
12. Weight Gain Issues
Blood tests can indicate the exact reason of slow weight gain if it is not caused by any of the above issues. Doctors often wait and watch before suggesting tests and treatment. The blood tests generally depend on symptoms baby shows and differ from case to case. Family history, genetic variations, etc., are also taken into consideration.
As long as it’s safe and recommended by the doctor it is good to breastfeed the baby. Breast milk is very important and necessary for early growth and development of child. If you need to change the pattern of breastfeeding you can choose what is best for you and your child while working closely with the doctor.
These are the 12 Reasons which can affect your baby’s weight gain issue. Find few solutions below, that can help your baby gain weight.
Weight Gain Supplements
Once your baby reaches an age of 6 months, you can start introducing him or her to solid foods. Some foods like potatoes, bananas and oats are suited to a baby’s delicate digestive system and can help them gain weight. You could also try ByGrandma’s porridge mixes. These porridge mixes are based on age-old recipes from a time when everything was made at home.
ByGrandma uses natural ingredients with no chemicals, preservatives or artificial flavours. They are made with the same care and attention that you would have paid if you were making it yourself. There are 4 porridge mixes recommended for babies who need to gain weight. Each porridge mix is rich nutrients and formulated to meet the demands of a baby’s palate.
- Plain Rice Porridge Mix- for 6 month + babies
Rice is one of the easiest foods to digest and hence the ideal solid food to introduce your baby to. It is rich in fiber and essential nutrients. Rice also helps you baby gain weight.
- Sprouted Ragi Porridge Mix – for 6 month + babies
Ragi of finger millet is another cereal that can be very beneficial for your baby. When sprouted, its nutritional value increases. This porridge mix is a rich source of fiber, carbohydrates, proteins, calcium and iron. Apart from helping your baby gain weight, it can also boost the immune system and act as a natural relaxant.
- Sprouted Ragi, Green Gram, Dalia with Almonds Porridge Mix– for 1 year + babies
By combining sprouted ragi, dalia, green gram and almonds, ByGrandma’s porridge mix meets all your baby’s nutritional needs. It improves digestion, strengthens the immune system and aids in weight gain.
- Ragi and Oats Porridge Mix– for 1 year + babies
Ragi and oats are filling foods packed with nutritional value. This porridge provides a mix of fiber, iron, calcium and proteins along with other essential vitamins and minerals for your baby. It keeps the stomach filled and hence curbs hunger pangs while simultaneously helping your baby gain weight.
The Convenience of ByGrandma Porridge Mixes
ByGrandma porridge mixes are designed as aids for young mothers who have to balance a million tasks at the same time.
Along with being nutritious, these porridge mixes are easy to make. All you need to do is mix one spoon of the porridge mix in 100ml of water and cook on a slow fire for 3-5 minutes while stirring to prevent lumps. Once it’s cooled, this porridge is ready for your baby.
For added flavour, you can always add mashed boiled vegetables to this porridge mix. You can also add a natural sweetener like palm sugar to the porridge. For babies over the age of 1 year, you can also add a few drops of ghee and salt. This is not recommended for babies below the age of 1 year.
Where to Buy ByGrandma Porridge Mixes
ByGrandma porridge mixes are available in your neighborhood departmental stores as well as online. You can place an order on ecommerce platforms like Amazon and Flipkart or on the ByGrandma website. So, what are you waiting for- your baby wants a tasty bowl of ByGrandma porridge- Order now!