When it comes to your baby’s birth weight, first-time parents want it to be average! Anything on the extreme end can make them fret. If the baby doesn’t weight a lot, they start thinking it might be sick. A weight that is too high puts them on the path of worrying about obesity.
The truth is that even though most babies weigh between 2.7 and 4.1 kg (6 – 9 lbs) at birth, with the average being 3.5kg (about 7.7 lbs). A weight that is a bit higher or lower is no cause for worry!
Factors that influence your baby’s birth weight
Different factors will determine how much your baby will weigh at birth, including:
- Your own weight and the diet that you follow during pregnancy and before it
- Your health before the birth of your baby
- The genes of both the parents
- Your age
- The sex of the baby
- Twin or single birth
- Ethnic origin
You will be spending the first few months of your baby’s life by watching them grow rapidly. Your baby will lose between 5 – 10% of its birth weight within the first few days. Don’t worry as they will gain that back in the first 2 – 3 weeks.
By 3 months of age, your baby’s height will increase approximately 2.5-3.8 cm. And they will gain about 100 – 150gms per week (which is about 5 – 7 ounces).
However, the figures are based on average, which means your baby can deviate from them.
What you should be focusing on is keeping the baby well fed. This includes looking for signals that babies usually give when hungry. They might fuss or stick out their tongues when they want to be fed.
As long as you do that and keep visiting your caregiver regularly, you will have nothing to worry about. Your doctor will keep records of the baby’s growth on a growth chart. What they will be interested in is are consistent growth patterns and so should you!
Lastly, the World Health Organization growth standards are the best reference for growth in the first 2 years. They are based on the growth of breastfed babies.
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