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Where the hell has her appetite gone? Help - "skinny" 21 month old now not eating at all

(38 Posts)
ELF1981 Sun 22-Jul-07 19:31:20

DD is 21 months old and weighs 24lbs (nearly) and has been on that weight for ages, though she has been eating like a horse in the past.

Thursday she was having brekkie and the CM said she was sick. She picked at food all day, and didn't really eat anything. Hardly ate anything Fri or Sat. Yesterday all she had was a few spoons of cornflakes, three strawberries and a tiny bit of bread. Today she has eaten some cereal, a small bite of ham, a few of those organix crips, four raisens and TWO baked beans.

Where has her appetite gone? What is wrong with her?!! I cant really have her NOT eat because already the HV's frown when I go (if shes sick etc) because she's a skinny min.

gemmiegoatlegs Sun 22-Jul-07 19:34:41

maybe she is coming down with something, has teeth coming through or just a bit under the weather. My dd is nearly 2 and often eats nought but fruit for days when she is not well.

ELF1981 Sun 22-Jul-07 19:37:20

I think she has all her teeth - not sure how many they are supposed to have, lol.

She seems okay in herself, a bit clingy but otherwise okay. Just no food

ELF1981 Sun 22-Jul-07 19:48:52

if her appetite has not picked up by Thurs should I take her to the clinic?

PrettyCandles Sun 22-Jul-07 19:54:22

Firstly, please try not to stress about it. Difficult, I know - I also have a child who is very slim and a light eater - but critical, as she will pick up on your stress. Remember that a healthy child will not starve themselves. Either they just don't fancy much at the moment, or they are sickening for something. The very best strategy IME is to just wait and see. Offer food as normal, but don't fill the plate so that it's not daunting, and don't make any fuss about what is not eaten.

FWIW ds1's already small appetite really diminishes just before a growth spurt. Then, when the growth spurt is over and he looks like a beautiful bag of bones , he suddenly starts making up for lost time and eating me out of house and home. After a few eeks he goes back to having a smallish appetite.

funnypeevesculiar Sun 22-Jul-07 19:57:19

dd (16 mths, diddy-wee thing!)) has been doing this too over the last few days - today ate no more than 3 mouthfuls at each meal <<sigh>> She is defn not quite well thouh - clingy/slight temparature. Am working on the policy that she'll sort herself out & giving her lots of milk - will your dd drink mik?

whomovedmychocolate Sun 22-Jul-07 19:59:39

Oh poor you - she sounds like she's miserable that's all, it'll pass!

You can take her to the docs if you are worried but she'll probably start chowing down again very soon.

Sod the HV btw, mine gives me hell for the opposite problem, you can't win, don't try!

tiredandgrumpy Sun 22-Jul-07 20:01:35

I've heard that you shouldn't stress about what a child eats in any particular day, but look instead at the last week - they have such ups and downs. ds has done this from time to time, usually when he's fighting off some bug.

lailasmum Sun 22-Jul-07 20:06:49

I agree with everyone. I have a skinny tall 3 year old who is very light (but healthy) and goes through phases of barely eating for several days and having a growth spurt then seems to change and starts eating more. When she barely eats she may just have a small cup of milk and a few bits of this and that, maybe a bite of apple and a single bit of pasta or something in a day. Though in general at her peak times of eating she never eats tons, she will eat anything but just not in any quantity. I think some kids are just like this.

ELF1981 Sun 22-Jul-07 20:30:08

Its just such a dramatic difference to when she is eating that had me worried. Usually she is eating me out of house and home, I get the feeling she is going to be one of those women that people grrrr over becasue she'll say "I can eat what I like and not put on weight"!. So from Wed where she ate a load of food, then nothing.

I will see what she is like over the next few days, hopefully it will pick up again. thank you for the posts

Eulalia Sun 22-Jul-07 20:33:55

My ds is only 23lbs and is nearly 2 years. He hardly eats either. Sorry not much advice but he seems healthy otherwise. If she eats well on other days then a few days off food will be OK.

fedda Sun 22-Jul-07 21:23:32

It usually helps to let your kids cook with you and even 21 month old child can help in some little ways. Mine loves watching Bid Cook Little Cook and we often use the recipies which are delish and so easy to make, they look very inviting. I'm sure we all had times when our kids hardly eat anything so I wouldn't worry but little tricks usually help. Sometimes inviting a friend over and her seeing how much her friend is eating can help. people often suggest not to wach TV while eating but one day I put a bowl of fruit in front of my child and didn't say anything, minutes later he was eating one piece after another being preocupied with what he was watching. I wouldn't suggest it on a regular basis but occasionally it could help. Anyway, best of luck. I feel for you, I had the same few years back.

ELF1981 Sun 22-Jul-07 21:29:04

she wanted to watch Bob the Builder today and so I said she could if she ate her dinner (after 15 mins of her wailing about being finished when all she had done was more the stuff around her plate). So we put it on and that is when she ate her two baked beans

fedda Sun 22-Jul-07 23:10:32

I'm really happy for you. It's a good start. She might eat better once she discovers how nice her food can be.

ELF1981 Mon 23-Jul-07 08:35:08

I have the CM watching what she eats today. She has hardly eaten since Thurs, and on Fri she kept asking for a banana (she'd had one already) but the CM did not have any, so I have sent her with double the usual amount of bananas, youghurts, mango, raisens and cheese, all items that she usually loves. Although the CM cooks her brekkie and lunch, I always send her snack type foods up so I have just sent double the usual amount and I will see how she gets on.

Got Shep pie tonight and she usually wolfs that down, going to get her to help me make it - not sure what she can do aside from pass me the onion and carrots etc out the fridge!! Maybe help me mash the potatoes?

lailasmum Mon 23-Jul-07 09:32:14

Sounds like you are doing the right thing. She will probably surprise you one day, eat tons and have grown or something.

legalalien Mon 23-Jul-07 10:08:27

prettycandles - interesting what you said about going off food prior to a growth spurt - DS does the same (and spends a week complaining of being tired - weird). He has always been a picky eater, however yesterday he announced (as we were walking to the park) that in seven more weeks he is going to be a "man" and will eat all his vegetables and be very strong! I will keep my fingers crossed. 49 days and counting....

PrettyCandles Mon 23-Jul-07 10:13:49

How old is he? What's significant about 7 weeks?

legalalien Mon 23-Jul-07 10:20:02

Just over 2 and a half, and the significance of the seven week period is a mystery to me. He's been keen on counting down time since I told him we had to wait 30 days after painting the wall, before putting his giant wall stickers on it - so maybe that has something to do with it?

Yokefleet Mon 23-Jul-07 15:27:23

Elf hiya hun, do you remember when Thomas was poorly every month for the fisrt few months of this year, that was him being sick then not eating anything and that was a throat infection.

Theclosetpagan Mon 23-Jul-07 15:36:00


Your DD might be coming down with something and have a poorer appetite as a result. Ignore the HV - she should be there to support you and bolster your confidence - not make you feel worse. Some children are meant to be skinny mins and as long as she's otherwise healthy your HV shouldn't be making negative comments. Is her height proportionate for her weight - I have seen children who are real sinny mins (am a PT HV) but when you look at the height they are entirely proportionate and healthy.

The thing your HV isn't taking into account is that you cannot MAKE her eat - you can produce the food and even get it into her mouth but she has the ultimate control about whether or not it slides down the "little red lane".

If it stresses you then avoid the HV clinic - can you weigh your DD on the bathroom scales?

ELF1981 Mon 23-Jul-07 20:55:36

I have been weighing her on the bathroom scales, only ever get her weighed when we have been to the clinic to get jabs, and to see the HV like the time we thought she'd caught worms. I had her officially weighed at 12 months and then a few months ago, and bathroom scales in-between.

She's had a very good appetite before hand, which is why this lack of eating is a shock! Today the CM said she really had to work with her to have brekkie, and that aside from a bit of yoghurt and a bite of cheese, she didnt have anything else there, though I know she must be hungry because she was begging for a bisuit. CM gave her one which is split in half and ate the cream centre and left the biscuit.

Brought her home, had her help cook shep pie with me (Good lord, what an event that was!) but she wouldn't eat any when it was cooked. We also made white choc chip cookies which she ignored, as well as the actual chocolate which I was surprised about! So not much today really.

YF - should I hike her to the docs? I know that children wont starve themselves, but cant help but think she cant continue not eating.

I did give her some medicine tonight because her ears were bright red. Have checked her mouth and it all seems okay, not swollen so I dont think there are any teeth on their way, but I may be wrong.

martini82 Mon 23-Jul-07 21:03:00

have you tried minadex??? (not sure on the spelling)!!

ELF1981 Mon 23-Jul-07 21:04:59

martini - what is that? Forgive me dumbness!

martini82 Mon 23-Jul-07 21:08:18

it a vitamin type medicen which helps to boost appetite! it was foreign to me too till my mum suggested it to me!!!

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