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Is it possible for a baby to just not be hungry??

(10 Posts)
backintraining Wed 12-Oct-11 21:24:47

Hi, I recently put a message on here because newborn DD was a nightmare to feed, was wondering about reflux etc, turns out it isn't that. She is FF (long story short, I have now tried to BF two babies heartwrenchingly unsuccessfully, had a breast reduction op many many years ago and it would appear put paid to BF for me) ANYWAY, DD is now 5wo, she was born at 7lb 15oz but went down to 7lb 6oz after we had a few days of trying to BF and her literally getting zilch.

At 5 days I started FF and she limped her way back to birth weight at about 2 and a half weeks, at her last weigh in yesterday she was 8lb 12oz, having gained 7oz last week and 5oz this week..... my issue is she really just doesn't seem hungry at all. Initially she was only taking 1oz - 1.5oz every 3-4 hours and was screaming etc, this was when we went back to hospital/doctors and have ruled out reflux or any other medical problem, it would appear she is just very windy and has trouble bringing it up. She now has - on a good feed - just about 3oz and this is every 3 to 4 hours, but just isn't interested, sometimes I have to wake her for feeds, sometimes she still only has 1.5 or maybe 2 ozs and that's your lot. She just isn't bothered, it appears that after about an ounce, whether she has burped or not, it's just such an effort for her. The evenings baffle me, I will feed her between 7-8pm and then I literally dreamfeed her at 11ish because there is no waking her and she never takes more than an ounce or so, she'll then wake at 3ish and then again at 7ish again only taking a maximum of 3ozs despite it having been 4 hours since her last feed. Please don't think this is me bragging that my newborn only gets up once in the night, I'm not at all, I'm bemused at how a newborn can survive on such little milk, I would gladly get up more often if she wanted to feed. I think she actually takes less than DS did at this age and he was 7 weeks prem and weighing half what she does.

She has wet/dirty nappies and when she is awake is alert and fairly content (unless she realises she has been put down for a nano-second, God forbid I need a wee!!). As for her weight, the HV doesn't seem overly concerned although she does keep mentioning that she has dropped down the centiles. She was born on just under the 75th and is now just over the 25th. She also keeps commenting that a baby her size should be having at least 20ozs in 24 hours and 4oz feeds, whereas I'm lucky to get 3oz down her and 16/17oz in 24 hours (clearly DD hasn't read the book). HV also keeps mentioning that whilst a 5oz weight gain is "acceptable for the time being" this won't be enough to sustain her in the long term!! Does anyone have any experience of a baby who is just not bothered about feeding?

backintraining Wed 12-Oct-11 21:25:10

Oooh, sorry for monster post.

narmada Wed 12-Oct-11 23:06:52

Sorry you're having a slightly challenging time with your DD sad

Perhaps she's just finding her centile?? - if she keeps dropping though I would go back to the docs. It's not like you've got no experience with babies and they should listen to you if you tell them that you think something's not quite right with her feeding.

DS was a bottle refuser even after quite agressive treatment for reflux. It turned out he had a cow's milk protein allergy - one of the symptoms can be feeding refusal or taking only very small amounts at a time IIRC. However with him there were other symptoms present apart from the bottle refusal (namely, lots of screaming, tummy cramps, really poor sleep etc).

backintraining Wed 12-Oct-11 23:35:42

Thanks for your reply. The good thing is that we are back at hospital for a review on 18th November so at least we''ll have a good few weeks of feeding to look at. Am keeping a feeding diary on advice of HV.

It's really bizarre. I can't compare DD with DS from a point of view of feeds/weight, because he was prem he's a whole other board game.

Let's see what tomorrow brings.

backintraining Wed 12-Oct-11 23:40:05

Should be ball game... Stupid phone!!

backintraining Thu 13-Oct-11 03:56:44

See, she is currently laid asleep on me after taking a pathetic 2oz. She had an ounce, fussed then did two great burps so I thought great she may have a good feed.... Nope, she just fussed again, barely taking the next ounce, have tried winding her again to no avail although am sure that's her problem. How the hell can she not be hungry? She hardly had anything at 7pm, I had to dreamfeed at 11 & managed just 2oz, now this. Come her morning feed she'll have had 4oz in 12hrs!!!!

Can anyone tell I'm at my wits end????? Doctors aren't interested because she's seemingly well etc, gaining even if it isn't much. I considered trying Dr Browns bottle in case it is wind or folic but Docs have said not to go chopping & changing as she CAN feed with her Tommee Tippee, its just as though she chooses not to.

backintraining Thu 13-Oct-11 17:00:24

Bump anyone?

4madboys Thu 13-Oct-11 17:22:48

my dd was like this! it took AGES for her to get up to taking a 4oz feed, she was 4mthsish when she did and then she stayed at 4oz feeds forever, near 6mths she took 5oz, VERY occasionally 6oz and she NEVER even when still totally on milk took more than 25oz in 24hrs, i woke her for extra feeds etc and she just wouldnt have them.

at 6mths i started her on solids and the cut down to about 16oz a day, she has gradually built that up to nearer 20oz a day, but now the past few days is refusing her lunchtime bottle so back to 16oz, she stayed on 4-5oz bottles once on solids, but now only has 4oz bottles (in the last few weeks0 she is 10mths and we had her weight monitered and she has consistently gained and is infact a big baby now 23lb at 10mths but her weigh gain was slow and steady.

she just never had a big appetite, she does however LOVE her solids now, i always offer her milk before solids but she just doesnt always want it.

i stressed and did threads on mn and asked hv, i even took her to the gp a few times to get her checked out, as she was 'meant' to be having much more milk for her age/size etc, but she has just never been a big milk drinker.

i found a friend at toddlers whose dd was the same, so that made me feel better!

anyway she is now 10mths and very healthy, meeting all her milestones etc, and once she was on solids i started giving her cheese, natural yog etc so she was getting calcium etc that way at least.

remember the amounts on the packet are a GUILDINE, some babies will take more, some less. my dd was of the LESS brigade! 5oz in a week sounds ok. she will let you know if she is hungry and if she is otherwise well, not too fussy, sleeping, alert when awake, weeing and pooing etc i would be guided by her.

my dd did have the occasional growth spurt where she took more milk, but still never near as much as she 'should' have been having. after 4 boys who all LOVED their milk, it was a big learning curve for me.

have you tried a different teat size btw? thats the only thing i tried but it never made any difference, ditto diff bottles etc.

4madboys Thu 13-Oct-11 17:29:41

btw i tried feeding her more frequently, ie little and often, feeding her less friequently and nothing made a difference, she quite quickly cut down her feeds so she was having 4 or 5 feeds in 24hrs, she simply would NOT have milk in the night if i tried to wake her, she had her dream feed at 11pm until about 5mths but it was always very hit and miss, then she would go through till 6pm or later! fabulous tho she still needed cuddles etc its not that she didnt wake, but she didnt want milk! and she developed her own 4hrly feeding pattern in the day but would still only take a small amount, generally 2-3oz which built up to 4oz VERY gradually!

it does stress you out! and i took kept a feeding diary, i probably still ahve it somewhere, i started to relax at 7mths ish once she was getting established on solids etc and it was clear she was a happy, content little thing, jsut with a small appetite!

backintraining Thu 13-Oct-11 20:14:01

Thanks so much for that reply. Am going to try and stress less. We are giving the Dr Browns bottles a try as she does have awful trouble with wind etc but I am also going to leave my mind open to the fact that she might just not be a big milk fan like u say. Thanks again.

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