1. Unique Growth Pattern
Each baby has a unique growth pattern. No two babies will gain weight at the same rate. When you are breastfeeding, you should listen for the swallowing sound, which is a “huh-ah” sound. You should see the movement of the muscles from the lower jaw to the ear when the baby is sucking deeply. Rest easy when you hear the swallowing sound, as it means your baby is getting the nourishment they need.
2. Natural Slow Gainer
Your baby will still gain weight steadily, even though it will be slower. They will normally stay on a certain growth curve. As a natural slow gainer, your baby will wake up on their own and be alert. They will let you know they are ready to eat. They should want to eat eight to twelve times in a twenty-four-hour time frame.
3. Inadequate Intake
Inadequate intake can be caused by poor breastfeeding management, which means your baby is not getting enough calories. It could be that your baby is not nursing as often as they should be. It could be due to your baby having distractions in the room, is a sleepy newborn, or there is too much pacifier use. These can be common problems that will cause a baby not to nurse correctly. Another problem could be not letting your baby decide when it is time to switch sides. You want to make sure your baby is latching on to the breast properly and getting the milk properly. You will want to make sure you are producing enough milk for your baby. A good way to increase the production of milk is to pump a little bit every day. You can freeze the milk you have pumped to use at a time when you will need to bottle feed your baby.
4. Check Baby’s Health
Make sure the baby gets regular checkups. Then you can make sure that the baby does not have any medical problems that might be affecting their weight. One possible problem could be jaundice, but do not worry it is easy to treat. Jaundice is easy to spot because you should notice a slight yellow tint to the baby’s skin or eyes. The baby’s slow gain of weight could be a result of the mother having some kind of emotional problems. Therefore, it would make it difficult for the mother to feed the baby adequately.
5. Medical Issues
There could be a medical problem that is causing the slow weight gain. The doctor should be checking if there is anything medically wrong, which would cause the problem. It could be the baby is sensitive orally or has a neurological issue that can cause problems with weight gain. There could be an inability to digest the food because of the capacity of the pancreas. The baby could have celiac disease or Crohn’s disease, which is a disorder that affects the lining of the bowel.
There might be some kind of disorder that is affecting the baby to be able to gain weight at a normal pace. A baby who is not feeding very good could have a heart disease, which could lead to heart failure. Very rarely, kidney failure or other kidney disorders can change some of the mechanisms of growth.
6. Increasing Baby’s Weight
If you are feeding the baby solid foods, then you need to decrease or stop giving them those items. Solid food has fewer nutrients and calories. You can try sleeping close to your baby so your body will make more prolactin, and the frequency of nursing times increases. If you learn to massage your baby, it will help to improve their digestion and weight gaining. If you let all your chores and other activities go for two to three days, your milk production will increase. You will be able to breastfeed around the clock, and it will help to improve your baby’s weight gain.
7. Signs That Baby Wants to Nurse
Your baby should wake eight to twelve times within a twenty-four-hour time frame and give you cues they want to nurse. Do not wait for your baby to start crying because it means you are waiting too long to nurse. When your baby is ready to nurse, they will begin to root around looking for the breast. They will start making licking noises or sucking motions. They may start bobbing their head and bringing their hand to their mouth to suck on. If your baby is being held by someone, the rooting will be obvious as your baby will be looking for the breast.
8. Contact with Baby
If your baby is sleepy and does not cue to be nursed, then wake them up to feed. You should nurse at least every two hours during the day and at least once during the night. Make sure to massage your breast and use compression during breastfeeding. Pump or hand express some of your milk before you nurse, so the baby gets more of the hindmilk and gets to it faster. If the doctor recommends supplements, then breastmilk is preferable. When you are not breastfeeding, hold your baby close to your chest, giving them skin to skin contact. It will help you to become more sensitive to the cues they are giving you.
9. Write Down Pertinent Information for Doctor
Keep a log of when your baby nurses and for how long they nurse at a time. You should also not which side it was at the time of the nursing. You will need to keep the log for at least twenty-four hours. It would be better if you kept it for at least a week. The more information you write down, the better it will be for the doctor on your next wellness check for your baby. The more information the doctor has, the easier for them to determine if there is a problem. If there is, then it will help the doctor to figure out how to fix the issue. A lot of times it is because your baby is just a slow weight gainer.