Baby Weight Chart - What You Should Know About Your Baby’s Weight

By Cathrine on December 13, 2018 in Blog

The most common question when a newborn baby arrives is, “What is the baby’s weight”? Then after while people start asking questions like, “how he is growing? Is he gaining weight?” Such questions can be disturbing to the mother especially if the baby is not putting on weight. Some moms even get stressed and depressed if the situation fails to improve. Pediatricians use the weight of a newborn as a marker of general health. To monitor a babies weight, parents should seek a doctor’s expertise to explain why and how the baby’s weight is increasing or decreasing.

Babies usually lose weight in the first few days after birth, and then after ten days, they get back to their birth weight. If the baby is not gaining weight after ten days, the baby and their feeding patterns should be assessed by the doctor to determine the problem.

In the first three months, a baby is supposed to gain weight on average 140 to 210 grams (5 to 7 1/2 per week. Jack Newman, a Toronto breastfeeding expert, and pediatrician points out that these averages can be misleading. He says that a baby who is following the 95th percentile on the growth chart, significantly he will have gained more. A baby following 3rd percentile significantly gains less than that. This is the reason why baby growth charts are a better method to judge how the baby is growing.

Montreal pediatric gastroenterologist and chair of the Canadian Pediatric Society’s Nutrition and Gastroenterology Committee, Valerie Marchand points out that their understanding in regards to normal baby weight has improved. She is part of a group that recommended the application of new growth charts. The charts were developed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The previous baby weight charts only used to mark down and track a baby’s growth pattern. They were based on formula-fed babies, but the new WHO model is based on breastfed babies who have started taking solid foods around six months after birth.

Sample Baby Weight Growth Chart by Month:

baby weight chart

The distinct difference between the new and old Infant weight charts is that the breastfed babies grow more quickly within the first four to six months and then the growth rate goes down. Oppositely, the formula-fed babies grow much slowly at first and then gain weight faster. The old charts gave the impression that the breastfed baby’s weight was faltering. Pediatricians knew it was okay, but a lot of parents were worried and would opt to wean and add formula. Thanks to the new growth chart, parents will see that the breastfed baby is gaining weight appropriately.

A baby who is between three and six months old should gain averagely 140 to 21o grams or 5 to 7 ½ ounces weekly. The average baby weight gain slows down to between 105 and 147 grams or 4-5 ounces weekly. Between the six and 12 months, the baby growth average weight rate is 70 to 91 grams or 2 ½ ounces weekly. In most cases, babies double their weight after birth within the first 3 -4 months and then triple it as the year ends.

Marchand says that, on genetic approach, parents should be aware that a baby’s birth weight depends on the mother’s diet and health during pregnancy. For example, a mother with gestational diabetes, her newborn is likely to be a larger-than-average baby, even if the baby’s genetics indicate a point toward a smaller size in adulthood. Alternatively, other babies may be smaller than average but genetically destined to become taller adults. So it is important for some babies to gain weight quickly to catch up, while others are supposed to reduce weight. It all depends on the current baby’s weight.

When should a parent get concerned about their baby’s weight?

Before the introduction of the WHO charts, slow-gaining babies tended to get the most attention, but now there are new concerns about babies who gain weight quickly. Marchand advises that parents need to look at height as well as weight. He says a baby who is on the 50thpercentile for weight but only the fifth percentile for height can be overweight. If a baby is on the 95thpercentile for both weight and height, he is fine.

For infants who are in a formula, rapid growth baby weight gain is likely to cause alarm. For instance, baby drinking 1.7 liters of formula daily, grows quickly as opposed to other babies taking smaller amounts. For breastfed babies weight gain is less of a concern because breastfeeding stops when they are done. In other words, in breastfeeding there is self-regulated intake. Mothers are not supposed to worry about the rapid growth in a breastfed baby who is content and healthy.

Newman attests that tracking baby’s weight gain is a useful tool that deserves to be used wisely. He says that even though parents are fascinated by numbers, they are only part of the story. Scales can be wrong, and you can compare two different scales because mistakes in weighing often occur.

What a mother should do when their baby is not gaining weight

The first step to take is to improve the way the baby latches on the breast. Mothers should be able to know when a baby is getting milk rather than nibbling at the breast. If the baby is not getting much milk, compression can help. Squeezing your breast while the baby is sucking will improve milk intake as you breastfeed. Compression is like expressing milk into the baby’s mouth. Milk supply decrease can cause slowed or stop weight gain and to establish the real cause; you need a breastfeeding expert to investigate the matter. Concluding on your own cannot help much compared to seeking help from experts.

Not all babies who are put on the weight scale get a number that matches growth rates. Many mothers find themselves under pressure to introduce infant formula or solid foods such as baby rice. Others question the knowledge base and stick to breastfeeding without minding their advisors and the accuracy of the growth rate chart. Mothers who have sought health professionals or breastfeeding counselors help because their baby is not putting on enough weight have been advised to increase the number of breastfeeding in a day — for example, working moms who have a problem in making sure that their baby babies maximally breastfeeds in a day. Such babies are likely to gain weight at slow rates if they have not been introduced to infant formula or solid foods.

Nowadays Baby-moon technique is getting popular. The method is a way of increasing breast milk supply or teaching a baby to breastfeed. A mom goes to bed with the baby for a couple of days, doing nothing but breastfeeding. To improve mom’s breast milk supply, breast milk expression, and medication is used.

Surprisingly, mothers still question their milk supply when their baby has gained weight. Such questions come at busy and disruptive times of the year like Christmas or summer holidays. At this time, a mother is usually busy with the child.

Generally, each mom is concernedwith her baby. Either the baby’s weight registers to increase or decrease. Their primary concern is the reason why the weight rate has gone up or down.


 

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Cathrine

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