Join Date: Jul 2007
Help! I can't make a decision regarding supplimenting
I had a baby girl, 8 lbs and 15 oz, on December 19th. Out of my four, she was the heaviest by 1 1/4 pounds, and a week later than my next latest. At the after-birth checkup (she was 5 days old) she had lost a lot of weight I don't remember the exact amount now, but it was about 11 ounces. They've had me coming in for weight checks ever since. I have yet to see our actual pediatrician because of the holidays/her off-days.
At 8 days she had lost a full pound. The nurse told me to suppliment with formula, but I refused, and concentrated on increasing my milk supply, because I was very dehydrated.
At 10 days, she had gained 2 ounces - now she was exactly 8 pounds. We saw a doctor subbing from a different practice, who told me what we were doing was great, and to keep doing it.
Today, at 12 days, she only gained .5 ounces (So she's at 8 lbs, 1/2 oz.) The nurse practitioner told me that she would really suggest supplimenting with formula at this point, since I'm making a large enough quantity of milk and she's still not gaining. She wants me to give her a 1/2 ounce or an ounce after I finish each nursing.
I'm torn. I really don't want to supplement, especially not with formula. Every single major world health/medical organization I've found suggests using your own milk first and then moving on to other things if that can't work. Not to mention the possible milk production problems.
I'm "watching the baby, not the scale" and she's perfect. Hydrated, alert, hitting milestones, active, acting satisfied, etc. If I didn't have a scale, I wouldn't worry at all.
Other pertinent information: I feed on demand, so about every 1 1/2 hours to 3 hours, depending (she cluster feeds.) I make sure she empties one breast and then we move to the other, and she usually gets to the point on that one that I see hind milk coming out. She is having the proper amount of wet and dirty diapers.
Oh, and at the doctor's office today, after the appt, I breastfed DD in our patient room, and then asked to weigh her on the scale again. She weighed 8 lbs, 3 ounces, so she got 2.5 ounces of milk (by weight - water oz by weight vs volume is similar, so I assume the same with bm?) I had actually nursed her right before the doctor came in for several minutes, so I'm sure she took in more than that.
But then I worry that maybe she's not getting something she needs - this is really, really slow weight gain. There's no way she'll be up to birth weight in the next two days, or anywhere close to it. Is it possible for breastmilk to not be nutritious enough? I am sooo hesitant to supplement with formula, but at this point, would doing it for a couple days really be that big of a deal?
I guess I'm looking for people to tell me what they would do in my situation, if their baby was gaining weight so slowly. Would you continue to nurse as much as possible and hope for the best, or would you supplement? I worry that we won't find the solution (if there's a medical issue) if we don't at least try formula, but then again, if there's a medical issue, wouldn't it show in other symptoms by now, like listlessness or other things indicating she wasn't getting nutrition?
I'm so confused!
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