K.S. asks from Olathe, KS on August 11, 2008
my daughter is 12 months old and is in the 20-25th percentile for weight. she is in a higher percentile for her height, though. she is reaching her developmental milestones (she's walking, teething, babbling, and otherwise happy) but she is petite. the doctor suggested giving her more proteins and fats, which we had already been doing. and she has started drinking whole milk and drinks it pretty well. i can't force feed her once she's full, but i'm still concerned that she's not eating enough. she will push the spoon away when she's done eating, or will start playing with her food if she's feeding herself, so i'm pretty sure that she's eating until she's full. and with her teething, her appetite is not the same all the time. i'm worried that she's not getting the nutrition that she needs. has anyone else had this problem? any suggestions?
So What Happened?™
Thanks to everyone who responded to my question about my daughter being in a low percentile for her age. I left her doctor's appointment feeling like a terrible mother, but I feel so much better after reading about your experiences with your own children. Thanks a lot!!!
C.D. answers from Columbia on August 17, 2008
She will Be O.K. both of my children have always been in the lower percentile for their weight and my oldest is 8 years old and barely weights 50 lbs. And my Youngest is 3 years old and barely weights 30 lbs. And they eat just about all the time. ut as long as she is eating when given food not to worry.
J.E. answers from St. Louis on August 13, 2008
She'll be fine and she will grow more over the next year. Dont stress. Even if she's petite as long as you are offering her the foods she'll eat as much as she needs. I wouldn't worry.
A.L. answers from St. Louis on August 12, 2008
I just wanted to echo that I don't think this is a problem. All kids are different. Being small isn't a bad thing. My daughter is < 10 percentile in height ~20-25 in weight, but is perfect!
A.N. answers from Kansas City on August 11, 2008
I wouldn't worry about the weight percentile your daughter is in. My ped has told me that the only time they worry is if the children are not registering on the charts or if they are not consistantly growing. As long as she contines to grow and reach developmental milestones you have nothing to worry about. She may just be a petite person, or she may catch up later.
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G.N. answers from St. Louis on August 11, 2008
I would just give her things high in fat like the whole milk, you can always try the pedisure drinks, got all the nutrients and vitamins she will need. Nothing wrong with petite as long as she is gaining weight and is healthy. If she stops when she is full and getting what she needs, I dont think there is anything to be worried about. I would only worry if she is losing weight and not gaining.
You are doing great, she sounds like she is doing great also.
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J.R. answers from Kansas City on August 11, 2008
I just happened to be sitting here as your request came across...Ignore the percentiles! I swear they are just guilt meters devised to make us feel inadequate as parents!! My first (daughter) has been off the charts as far as height and head but average for weight. My second however (son) has been slightly above for height and head but in between the 10-20% for weight, even down to the 8% at one point. I spent the first year of his life worrying, fretting and trying to feed him more than he wanted, whole milk at 12 mos. etc. Not only did none of it work but it just added to my stress. My ped has always said not to worry. As long as he's healthy, gaining - not losing - and meeting his milestones he'll be just fine. He's now just over 2.5 yrs, has always been "under weight", is full of energy (boys!), has met or surpassed all developmental milestones and has rarely been sick. He eats when he's hungry and doesn't when he's not. We make sure to feed him all nutritionally balanced meals/snacks and have given up trying to get him to a certain "percentile". My third seems to be on the same track as him so I'm glad to know now what I wished to have known then - they're all different. A baby that was above average everything for the first 2+ years can end up being a 5'4" bean pole, they all grow up differently - some early on, some as teenagers. Soooo.... Relax. She's fine. You're doing a great job. Enjoy the moments without the worry. And as we all know, better to be a bit under than a bit over!
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B.S. answers from Kansas City on August 11, 2008
I wouldn't worry about percentiles, either. Emme (who is almost 2.5) JUST NOW got into the 10th for her weight and has always been in the 95th for her height. Tall and skinny. The doctors aren't worried about so neither am I. I do get concerned with how much she eats (she's nonstop) but that's another story. Just make sure you're feeding her as healthy as you can. That's about all you can do! :)
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R.L. answers from St. Louis on August 12, 2008
I wouldn't worry about it. It sounds likes she's thriving in every other way. Some kids are just smaller than others. Some doctors have an issue with weight. My now 17 year old son was always on the low scale. The doctor pushed me and pushed me to get him to eat more. I believe that created a whole new problem. He's a healthy cross country and track runner now who literally eats me out of house and home. He's close to six feet tall, but he is still slender. That's just the way he was intended to be. I let the doctor worry me sick about his weight when he was a baby. Don't let your doctor to that to you.
S.S. answers from Lawrence on August 12, 2008
My daughter is 14 months old and at her 12 month appointment...well all of her appointments she was only 1% in her weight. Dr said because she is growing she's fine. She isn't being deprived by any means. She's just petite. She eats a ton and sometimes we have to cut her off b/c she eats so much.
As long as she's eating she will be fine.
M.O. answers from Kansas City on August 12, 2008
If she has been consistantly growing in that 20-25th percentile, I wouldn't worry. If she started off, say, in the 50th percentile and has been gradually declining in percentiles, that would be a greater cause for concern. I too give my youngest Pediasure (and am glad to hear there's a cheaper equivalent) with good results. If you choose to give that to your daughter, offer it as a between-meal supplement; you want to make sure she's filling up on "real food" at meal time.
D.M. answers from Kansas City on August 15, 2008
As long as your daughter is growing along the same curve, there really isn't anything to worry about. My son, who is now 3, has until his 3 year check-up been in the 15-25th percentile for weight but about the 75th percentile for height. I was a bit worried, too, but his pediatrician simply said that as long as he remained constant, there's nothing to worry about. If, however, for some reason she takes a nosedive in her weight percentile (or dramatically increases her weight percentile), then there may be cause for concern. Otherwise, as long as she's eating and you're offering her foods with the nutrients she needs, she'll be just fine. And you definitely can't force them to eat, so if she's eating until she's full, there's nothing more you can ask for.