Baby Weight Gain: 6 Things To Know
The new bundle of joy sleeping so peacefully in their crib will soon grow into a bustling and giggling toddler running around the home. Part of growing up is gaining some body weight, but too much won’t be healthy.
No two children grow the same way, and as long as parents ensure they eat a balanced, healthy diet and keep an eye on their development, they should continue to become the beautiful children they’re destined to be.
Some first-time parents may not have all the information they need about how much weight their baby would need to gain during the first few months of life, so below is a helpful guide:
1. All Babies Are Different
Babies need to go for checkups every few weeks for the first few months after birth. Medical professionals have a chart they consult containing length and weight measurements to compare the infant’s growth with that of other babies of the same age. Growth charts have a higher and a lower percentile to help establish whether the baby is growing at a healthy rate.
The measurements for your baby should be between the higher or lower percentiles to be considered healthy by the pediatrician. As your baby continues to grow, you can rely on your pediatrician for nutritional advice, such as eating healthy snacks like those from Serenity Kids.
2. The Type Of Feeding Matters
Some mothers prefer to breastfeed their children, while others choose formula as their favored way of feeding. When choosing a formula make sure to pick one from a trusted brand preferably organic certified like HiPP PRE formula which is a great choice from the first day of life. Although there’s a call for mothers to breastfeed, neither of these options would leave a baby lacking in nutrition.
However, there will be slight differences in weight gain. Formula babies could gain weight faster than babies drinking breast milk. It may be easier for mothers to monitor the amount of milk the baby drinks when they drink from a bottle, but some argue that breast milk is healthier.
3. Weight Specifics For Each Age
From birth, babies will steadily gain weight as they age. The average weight gain for a happy, healthy child will range between a few ounces or grams per week. According to the growth percentiles for each age group, below are the averages that parents can refer to:
• Birth to four months: 5 to 7 ounces or 170 grams per week
• Four months to six months: 4 to 6 ounces or 113 to 150 grams per week
• Six months to one year: 2 to 4 ounces or 57 to 113 grams per week
4. How To Monitor Weight Gain
Parents should follow the recommended feeding schedule when using formula to prevent overfeeding their babies. Usually, breastfed babies will be less inclined to overfeed, and mothers should just keep track of how many times they feed their babies.
Parents should consult a doctor if there are unusual changes in their baby’s feeding pattern. They should also take to heart any advice they receive and ensure to take their babies for their scheduled checkups.
5. Feeding Problems To Look For
Babies can cry a lot, and sometimes parents aren’t aware of the deeper, underlying meaning of these cries, especially when they’re first-time parents. If a baby isn’t gaining weight as they should, or they gain too much weight, there may be some medical or other issues that parents need to identify:
• The baby struggles to latch onto the bottle or nipple
• Brings up milk, which indicates a reflux problem
• Has a weak sucking ability
• Seems limp or frail and unable to cry properly
• Seems dehydrated with dry skin, dry mouth, fast breathing, and rapid heart rate
• Appears drowsy and sleeps more than usual
• Urine in the baby’s diaper is dark in color or has a foul smell
• Change in skin color from a healthy pink to a yellowish color
All these will be cause for concern, and parents should observe their babies closely for any signs that may indicate they aren’t getting enough nutrition or fluids.
6. Where To Seek Guidance
If parents suspect their baby has feeding issues or are concerned about their growth or any other aspect of their child’s health, they should immediately consult their pediatrician. The doctor may refer parents and babies to a pediatric nutritionist for more advice, guidance, and healthy feeding tips to get their baby onto the healthier side of the average percentiles.
Parents who care for their babies and give them the nutrition they need should see no issues with their baby’s weight gain. Their preference, whether breastfeeding or formula milk, doesn’t matter. As long as they take their babies for regular checkups and follow the doctor’s advice, the babies should grow up to be healthy, happy children.