Support for 5 lb babe - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 05:43 AM - Thread Starter
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I just had a five lb baby on Sunday morn around 3am at home. Totally awesome birth with no drugs or interventions. But she was 19 days early and I am trying not to worry about her low birth weight. She wieghed 5 lbs at birth and was 19 inches. Tall and lanky like DH.

Mid-wife came tonight and she weighed 4.85 lbs. I am breastfeeding but my colostrom came in late and my milk has not come in yet. I will call a lactation consultant tomorrow morning (Tuesday.). She didn't really latch on immediately even though I offered the breast, of course.

Can you help me not to flip out about her low weight and the loss of weight? I feel so helpless. It's hard to find info about low birth weight babes and how to be okay with their weight. I am trying to trust that she is okay!

We are doing lots of skin to skin and her temp is good. Reflexes and breathing are great! Apgar ws 8-9. Heartbeat is good. She cries strong and has good poopy and wet diapers.

I wil post her AWESOME birth story soon but I gotta get some composure and help first about her weight. Poor girl, starting life with weight issues. So full of love for her that it's scary to think about her low weight. Especially b/c we're home and don't know what is normal since we are first time parents. I am trying to read and find encouragement. My incredible and wise MW and Doula have been awesome. My MW has ten kids of her own and over ten years experience. She is super encouraging. I think that I just need to hear more about how she really is okay. Trying to trust.

doula mama to my nov 05 and my feb 08 babes who wrap me in love.
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#2 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 06:46 AM
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I cant offer much advice other than babies can safely lose 10% of there birthweight, and from the weights you have given it doesnt sound like your little one has even lost that... She sounds like she is doing great and so do you. Happy Birthing day Mama
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#3 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 10:15 AM
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many babies leave the hospital weighing less than you let her nurse at least 10 min on each side? the first 5 min gets the milk out, the extra time gets the hindmilk out(the fatty part) and letting her nurse longer increases supply. Sounds like you are doing fine...don't freak...Just bring her to bed with you, and nurse away!
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#4 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 10:35 AM
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Congratulations!! It sounds like the baby is doing wonderfully so far. Just don't forget to *drink, drink, drink*, so you will have plenty of milk. A large glass of water or herbal tea every time you nurse will help your milk get established quickly.
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#5 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 10:45 AM
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Congratulation!!! It's me Sabrina from NC cloth. I'm calculating that the babe was about 3 weeks early right? Well, my dd was 5'1 & 19 inches...but absolutely perfect too. When we came home from the hospital she was 4.8. Currently she is about 13lbs at 7 mos, that makes her in the <3% (not actually on the growth chart), but she has doubled her birth wt and met all her milestones so we are thrilled. Like another poster said babes can lose 10% or more and it's within normal limits. My ds also lost 12% and didn't get back to birthwt for 4 weeks. It's hard not to worry, but try not too. Keep doing what you're doing. Keep nursing away and get a good nursing relationship established. I know it's hard in the begining but hang in there!

Sabrina , mom to 4 fab kids!

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#6 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 11:07 AM
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I've not had your predicament but I have had doubts and best advice is to trust your gut and avoid reading too much junk (scare tactics ...stuff that says you NEED medical care). If she is eating often and appears content then she is likely on her way to catching up. See what the midwife says and remind yourself that you are a strong intuitive woman!
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#7 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 12:26 PM
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You don't even need to start worrying until she drops below 4 lbs 8 oz. The more important issue is her output of wets and poopy diapers and it sounds like she is doing great.

Go to to find a whole lot of great nursing information, including how much output you want to watch for. And if you want her to gain faster, it's probably better to leave her on one breast until *she* decides to pop off, which if she's like my boy was, could be an hour, lol.

Also, if she does drop low and you need to supplement, kellymom has great information on that and how to use SNS or finger feedings so as to not end up with nipple confusion later on and how to wean from them. But it does not sound like she will need it.

Your baby sounds like she is doing WONDERFULLY! Congratulations! Rest, drink water, eat protein, and enjoy your babymoon!

Mum to DS (8yrs), DD (6yrs), and DS(3.5yrs). kid.gif

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#8 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 02:46 PM
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everything that your saying... good diapers, good temp, good reflexes etc.. says she's doing fine... Just like grown ups babies come it all different packages.

My dd was 5.1 at birth I refused to weight her after that as I didn't want to worry about the normal lose of weight right after birth and I didn't want anything like that noted on her chart (she was a hospital birth) because she was born at more than 4.5 lbs the hospital had no grounds for not allowing me to take her home. She did fine. She's always been small. She's 7 now and tall and skinny. She can wear a size 24m shorts, of course they are short short lol but her waist is just little.

The weight is just a number, everything else is going great so try to think about how lucky she'll feel when she's 16 and a size 1
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#9 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 03:14 PM
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Congratulations!!! My kids have all been between 3 and 5 weeks early and in the 5.1-5.7lb range at birth. They all lost around 10% in the first few days, then quickly started to gain back once my milk came in. It's unnerving to think of your "little" baby losing weight, but if she's peeing and pooping, you know she's on the right track. And, if I'm understanding correctly, she was just born Sunday, so I don't think your milk is really that late? The PPs have given great advice. It sounds like she is doing great, so just nurse, nurse, nurse! That colostrum is great stuff too.
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#10 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 07:54 PM
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I agree with Thmom. . .watch the baby, not the scale! Maybe you can liken it to a hospital birth where everyone is clustered around the electronic monitor, watching the graphs instead of watching the mom - your baby is eliminating and breathing and all that good stuff, so just keep her on you, nurse all the time, and fling the scale out the window.

How happy you'll be with her size when you can carry her in that sling so much longer without breaking your back!

Very hearty congratulations to you, and welcome baby girl!!!

Kelli, radical unschooling mama to four beautiful homebirthed lovies (ages 14, 9, 5, and 19 months) 
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#11 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 08:03 PM
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I have one who was 5lb's. Nurse, nurse, nurse. And look at your baby, not the scale. If she has many poop and pee diapers, she should be fine.

With my little bitty one I nursed almost 24/7 for the first month. She is now 18, expecting a baby and posting here.

Don't worry mama and congrats!!!
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#12 of 12 Old 11-08-2005, 08:50 PM
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From what I've read on MDC, that sounds perfectly normal. I'm sure you've gotten other responses on helpful things to watch for (frequency of wet diapers, what percentage of loss might be a problem, when babies usually get back to birth weight).

Congratulations on your new daughter!
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