24 answers

9 Month Old Not Growing

I took my seemingly happy and healthy 9 month old to his well baby check up yesterday and discovered he hasn't grown since his 6 month check up. I was shocked because I feel like he eats all the time. The doctor is concerned that he fell from the 75th percentiles in both height and weight (where he's been since birth) to below the 20th. She suggested I try supplementing with formula after he breastfeeds.
Now that I'm home and have had time to think, I'm quite worried and have some questions- like maybe he's breast feeding so often because I'm not producing enough milk? (I'd really like to continue b.f.) But even if I feed him more, why hasn't he grown taller? The problem isn't that he's small, it's that he's dropped in the charts. Has anyone experienced this and what did you do/ how did it turn out? He's not a great finger-food eater. He eats mushed up food (Gerber and bananas, avocado, etc.) and Cheerios, but tends to gag on anything bigger. Perhaps he's just going to be short, but at least his ratio is good? Do you think I should be concerned? I read other posts about baby weight gain, but they all addressed babies who had always been small.... Your advice/ thoughts are appreciated.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, I can't say "what happened" yet, but thank you all so much for your thoughtful responses. I was hoping you'd all say not to worry about it, but at least now I know that this is not normal! I certainly plan to continue breastfeeding but also adding formula. He has been feeding on demand, so it seems he should be getting enough but it's hard to say how much. But now that it's been brought to my attention, I realize I may have been replacing too many milk calories with purees. I called to schedule a follow-up to talk more with the dr, and I made a list of all your great concerns/suggestions to bring up. I just wasn't prepared to discuss his growth and eating issue at the last appointment because I had no idea there was a problem- he'd been growing so well! Hopefully he'll just measure bigger in a month and I won't need to worry any more. And I liked the comment about the measuring- it could easily have had an inaccurate one.

Featured Answers

Increase you milk production by feeding him as often and as long as he wants to. Don't succumb to the stereotyping.
Good Luck
V.

1 mom found this helpful

Right now I would go with supplementing him with formula and then go
back to doc. What is his height and weight? Has he lost weight or just
not gained. I would supplement for two weeks and then go back. Definitely
would not wait any longer.

1 mom found this helpful

Do you do a lot of rice cereal and baby foods? I would add in lots more of that. Also, don't be afraid to supplement with formula- I don't think I kept up with my daughter but the rice cereal and baby foods were great. It is somewhat concerning, but it isn't anything that you can't change!

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

When you start wanting to breast feed for emotional reason, then it is time to consider what is best for the health of your child. You can still breast feed and supplement. I think you should also seek an appointment with an endocrine doctor to check his growth. Do not wait until next check up - take the lead and get more information and another doctor’s opinion. An endocrinologist specializes in growth. I know my son goes to one.

2 moms found this helpful

K., I would talk to a feeding specialist. Do you have a children's hospital near you? That would be a good place to look - if you don't, your ped can help you find a feeding specialist. The reason I think of this is because you mention that he isn't much into finger-food, eats mushed up foods and gags. This could be a sensory issue.

I know there are tests they can do to rule out endocrnology problems or some other issues. But your ped doesn't do this. A children's hospital has developmental peds who can start the process of figuring this out.

I do agree with the idea to start supplementing. But you need to work on his eating so that in the coming months as he is supposed to be eating more, he won't just be getting his calories from formula/breastmilk/milk.

Best of luck,
D.

1 mom found this helpful

Years ago, my friend discovered that her daughter wasn't growing at a check up. Her daughter wasn't a 9 month old baby like you have, (I think she was around 5 years old), but after they ran some tests, their doctor told her that her daughter's trigliceride level was off the charts. Once she started feeding her daughter the right kind of foods for her, she started growing. Are there any cholesterol/trigliceride problems in your or your husband's family? Worth checking into. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

Not growing is definately a concern. My doc always explained that they watch the child on their own chart and as long as there is growth then the percentile doesn't matter. I would be very concerned if there was no change in height/weight over a 3 month period.

I didn't have enough breast milk and supplemented my twins with formula. You can keep breastfeeding and then just offer a bottle or sippy cup of formula after you finish. Then he gets the best of both worlds. Breast milk from you and extra calories from the formula.

You can also give him more pureed food - maybe an entire container or more 3X per day. Make sure you feed until he is full. He will turn his head away or close his mouth when he is done. I was often surprised by how much my girls wanted to eat and the doctor said that they will not over eat at this age unless you force them to eat when they refuse.

good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

My oldest did this and in the end was determined to have a growth hormone deficiency. It's is treatable and he has no developmental delays. And honestly, it kept him extra baby adorable for a little longer.

Anyway, you may want to talk with a pediatric endocrinologist if he hasn't grown at all. If his growth has just SLOWED, he may just be leveling out to where he'll be for awhile.

1 mom found this helpful

Are you still feeding him purees? My son at purees up until his first birthday, when he refused to eat them anymore. He also ate some finger foods starting around 9 months.

1 mom found this helpful

This same exact thing happened with my (breastfed) son (and I never thought of myself as a huge milk producer). Instead of supplementing with formula which just didn't seem good to me, I supplemented with higher calorie foods. For example, instead of just serving fruit, I would mix in some cereal to up the caloric intake. My doctor did not suggest supplementing with formula. She just said we would monitor it to see what happened over the next few weeks and we brought him in for an extra weight check. The extra boost of food helped and he has been fine ever since.

1 mom found this helpful

Don't worry too much about numbers.. maybe he had just gone through a huge growth spurt right before his previous check up and is getting ready for another. As long as he seems happy and healthy, don't worry too much. My second started out in the 90th percent and by her check up around 10 months she was in the bottom 7 for weight and 20 for height- she's almost 4 now and very healthy and normal height. Her weight is still below average, but she eats well and we are just lucky we don't have to worry about her weight! Keep breastfeeding and let him nurse often too keep up your supply- also drink lots of water :) as long as he seems content after feedings, you are doing fine!

1 mom found this helpful

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