Doctor is concerned about my 13 month old baby's weight

Tiffanie - posted on 07/03/2010 ( 16 moms have responded )

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I am still breastfeeding my 13 month old son, and his DR says he is not gaining enough weight. Do any other breast feeding mothers have any weight concerns approached by the baby's doctor? When I took my son to his 12 month well baby checkup, the doctor told me he had not gained enough weight. He was 6lbs 10oz at birth and 18lbs 10oz at his year checkup. Don't they look for the child to triple his weight, which he did. His father and I are both very lean, does the dr not take genetics into consideration? Do any other mothers have this problem or a similar one? I do offer him "big people food" and whole milk, but he wishes to nurse and that is fine by me. I don't think either one of us are ready to wean yet, and I don't want to feel pressure to have to. My son is very active, he is doing new things everyday, and I see his development as very progressive. So should I worry about my 13 month old baby's weight?

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Megan - posted on 07/04/2010

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I don't think any breastfeeding mom should be told to stop breastfeeding a certain amount of months. It is a bonding experience. When u r ready to wean him, u will know when it's time. Though I think weaning before they go off to Kidergarten is a good idea.LOL!! And if ur son is active and getting other supplements other than breastfeeding. Don't worry about your 13 month old baby's weight, he is fine. Get a new doctor. or get a second opinon.

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I don't think you should worry about your 13 month old baby's weight. My will be 1 in a week time and just weighs 18lbs 7. He hasn't been putting on as much weight as he used since he crawls everywhere in the house! He is very active! His dad is quite thin too (not me unfortunately =)) My first son (who is now 7 and perfectly healthy and active) has done exactly the same, he even started crawling earlier the 2nd, so was not putting on a lot of weight. So i was really worried, but the doc said not to, as this is normal, as long as he is quite steady on his growth chart (no sudden big ups or downs, except when they start crawling or walking because they get more active). As long as your baby is active, happy, eating and breastfeeding, this ok. Just check his weight from time to time to make sure, and reassure yourself.

Dawn - posted on 07/05/2010

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my daughter is also 13 months and still b/f. her weight gain started slowing down about 4 months ago. she was born on the 75th line and stayed at this until then and went below the 50th and at the last weigh-in about a month ago was just touching the 50th. I hate to think what she is now as she's not been eating much with the heat and has been teething too so has wanted more 'mummy milk'.
Now they are past 1 year they would be having cows milk rather than formula which isn't any where near as good as breast milk so I wouldn't say to stop breastfeeding.
My health visitor just said to make sure I didn't breastfeed too close to meal times otherwise she wouldn't eat her food.

Sylvia - posted on 07/04/2010

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Your DS sounds a lot like my DD (6 lb at birth, 16 lb 12 oz at 12 months, didn't start eating solids until 7-8 months, hitting developmental milestones just fine, extremely active, still primarily nursing at 12-13 months). Except, fortunately, our paediatrician isn't an idiot :P

Not every baby can be at the top of the growth charts -- that's what percentiles *mean*. A healthy, happy, milestone-meeting, weight- and height-gaining baby shouldn't be flagged as "not gaining enough weight" just because he's a few ounces shy of exactly tripling his birth weight.

Angie - posted on 07/03/2010

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You are 100% correct in the way you feel Tiffanie, there is a lot of misinformation in this post.

Many people believe babies must be on 3 meals a day and get cows milk at his age but that's just not the case. But in reality babies really don't *need* that many solid foods at this point. Many people don't even begin to introduce solids until after a year (my youngest hardly ate anything at all until just the last month or so and she's 21 months old). You are right in thinking that you and your husband are both small. Just to give you an idea my oldest weighed 19 lbs 2 oz at your sons age and she was 8 lbs 4 oz at birth. So she wasn't much larger than he is at a year but she was considerably larger than him at birth and there was never the slightest bit of concern. Now at 3 1/2 she only weighs 27 lbs but I'm small it wouldn't make sense that she'd be a big kid.

If I were you I would continue to offer him his meals like you are now but don't stress about it. Breastmilk doesn't suddenly stop nourishing their bodies fully at a year, there isn't a magic switch. There is absolutely nothing in cows milk that he isn't getting from you (except perhaps vitamin d).

Keep doing what you are doing, he is getting what he needs and if you are ok with him nursing so frequently then it's really not your doctors concern.

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16 Comments

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Ashley - posted on 03/26/2012

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Don't worry. Docs follow the guidelines and don't seem to think for themselves very often. Stop worrying. I say only worry about the kids if they stop meeting milestones.

Melissa - posted on 03/23/2012

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My son started showing some of his developmental problems at 6 mos through not gaining weight, so it is important to watch. Big question is, did his weight percentile drop dramatically? That's the percentage of kiddos that are that weight or lower in a study. Mine dropped from 25th to 10th to 2nd and stopped growing taller. That's no good and when you truly need to worry. But mine was also obviously not eating. However, he was cheery and running around and flying through all his other developmental milestones.



From the point of view of a mom who had a child who really had issues, despite all the platitudes, it sounds like he's doing pretty well. Your son is obviously eating from what you've said. If you're looking for a time to worry, watch the weight percentiles over a few appointments. If they generally stay around the same, don't worry. If they drop sharply, be a little more cautious. If a drop is accompanied by his height remaining the same, then look for some help. Unless you see that, have fun and enjoy nursing.



One suggestion, since pediasure is so very expensive, you can always use Carnation Instant Breakfast. It's cheaper and has slightly more calories. Most sippys are about a cup, so I could keep a measure of the powder in one and add milk if we were out to eat. It was a great tip from a nutritionist. The other thought to keep in mind, my child would stop eating if he knew he would be getting a pediasure or the Instant Breakfast later.

Chanell - posted on 07/05/2010

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My Dr said they just like to see the weight gain steadly. My daugher just turned 14 months old. and shes still BF's 2-3 times aday.. by her choice.

My Dr also said that once a baby starts to walk..(my daughter did about a week before she turned 11months) will tend to loose weight or not gain for awhile.. cause they are so active. (My daughter only gained 1 lbs from 9 months to 1 year) I was a bit worried that I was doing something wrong but he said not to worry. She eats regular food, drinks regular milk, and healthy fats. so he said to just keep doing what im doing. :)

I believe your baby is doing just fine. And sounds like your doing a great job! Keep up the great work.. :) Dont wean unless you and your child are ready.. you have made it this far...

Sylvia - posted on 07/04/2010

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Also -- when I hear stories like this about doctors I always remember a case history I read in one of Dr Jack Newman's books. There was a little girl, I think two or three years old, who would only nurse and eat Jello; the paediatrician told her mother she had to wean immediately so that her daughter would start eating other foods, so she did, and, yeah, you guessed it, the little girl would still only eat Jello, and was now losing out on all the nourishment she'd been getting from nursing. (Alas, I can't remember how the story ends. But you see my point.)

Kelly - posted on 07/03/2010

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No not at all. He is doing very well. Just keep breast feeding as long as you both wish

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I had a reply typed up and my computer ate it :-( My dr. also is 'concerned' about my 18m olds weight- she tripled by her 1st bday- but hasn't done much since then. She eats ALOT (anymore who's ever had a meal with her says that they have never seen a child her size eat as much as she does), nurses as much as she ever has, and is the most active toddler I've ever been around. But she's tiny. My hubby & I are both pretty thin, and he has a small frame. She's hitting all her milestones & is happy, thriving, peeing ALOT & pooping regularly, so I'm not worried about it, but the dr. wants to weigh her every 2 mos..... Good luck!

Tiffanie - posted on 07/03/2010

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He does eat turkey, he loves turkey. He will eat dry cereal or yogurt in the mornings for breakfast. We have recently started giving him pediasure along with the organic whole milk with dha and omega 3s added that we have been giving him. He never took a bottle from me or anyone if he could see me. We started him on a cup, which is how we give him any liquids. But I am a stay at home mom, so he wants to nurse and knows he can at anytime, like I said I am ok with BF and want to continue. Thank you all for the peace of mind that your comments have given me on my 13 month old's weight :)

Olivia - posted on 07/03/2010

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Are you strictly bf-ing? At this point 13 months, your breast milk is giving only around 50% of his nutrients. Your milk is better than cows milk so that's not what needs change. He should maybe be eating some solids at this point for the rest of his nutrients needed.



I don't think you should be worried about your 13 month old baby's weight though, as long as your consuming enough of food and water for the two of you. I mean everything has been going good for the two of you up to this point, it is only now the DR has said something.



So basically add some solid foods to his diet, I would recommend good sugars from fruits and veggies and meats like turkey and some chicken.

Patricia - posted on 07/03/2010

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I agree with Celeste`. If a child has steadily gained weight and is active and bright then there is no cause for concern. With all the extra activity he is doing he will need carbs in his diet for energy, and protein and veg of course but you are doing this by the sounds of it, so don't worry about your 13 month old's weight.

DO not push yourself to wean before either of you are ready, 12mths is a very young age to stop altogether. My DD was 2yr 3mth roughly when she was ready ( i was ready at 6mth lol)

Sarh - posted on 07/03/2010

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If your not already, try eating more protein rich foods! Eat lots of meats, other wise it's like your son is just drinking milk and there is nothing else to it. Also, genetics doesn't always matter. The doctor may also just really want him on the cows milk because of other things he needs. Is your son ONLY nursing? He NEEDS to get his own nutrients from foods and cows milk. Nursing at like bed time or something like that for the bonding is still ok. If he was bottle fed would you still allow him to be on the bottle past a yr old? It's not much different.

Celeste - posted on 07/03/2010

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Your gut is right on! Sounds like he's meeting developmental milestones and overall healthy! I don't think there's anything to worry about; he's doing great!

Here's a great article by Dr. Gordon called "Look at the baby, not the scale"
http://drjaygordon.com/pediatricks/newbo...

Tiffanie - posted on 07/03/2010

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He does eat turkey, he loves turkey. He will eat dry cereal or yogurt in the mornings for breakfast. We have recently started giving him pediasure along with the organic whole milk with dha and omega 3s added that we have been giving him. He never took a bottle from me or anyone if he could see me. We started him on a cup, which is how we give him any liquids. But I am a stay at home mom, so he wants to nurse and knows he can at anytime, like I said I am ok with BF and want to continue. Thank you all for the peace of mind that your comments have given me on my 13 month old's weight :)

Olivia - posted on 07/03/2010

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Are you strictly bf-ing? At this point 13 months, your breast milk is giving only around 50% of his nutrients. Your milk is better than cows milk so that's not what needs change. He should maybe be eating some solids at this point for the rest of his nutrients needed.



I don't think you should be worried about your 13 month old baby's weight though, as long as your consuming enough of food and water for the two of you. I mean everything has been going good for the two of you up to this point, it is only now the DR has said something.



So basically add some solid foods to his diet, I would recommend good sugars from fruits and veggies and meats like turkey and some chicken.

Patricia - posted on 07/03/2010

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I agree with Celeste`. If a child has steadily gained weight and is active and bright then there is no cause for concern. With all the extra activity he is doing he will need carbs in his diet for energy, and protein and veg of course but you are doing this by the sounds of it, so don't worry about your 13 month old's weight.

DO not push yourself to wean before either of you are ready, 12mths is a very young age to stop altogether. My DD was 2yr 3mth roughly when she was ready ( i was ready at 6mth lol)

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