Newborn Baby Weight: What is the Average Baby Weight at Birth?

on July 10, 2018

Gestation period, health care, environmental factors and many more are responsible for the weight of a baby after birth. A baby loses weight not only because of sickness but because of formula feeding and inadequate fluid intake. The newborn baby weight is often referred to as the birth weight of the infant. On an average the birth weight of a healthy newborn is around 6-7 pounds. Most of the newborn infants weight in between 5.5 to 9.5 pounds. It is important to understand that the birth weight does not completely depend on the baby but the mother as well. A healthy diet, proper nutrients and adequate rest is important for a mother during pregnancy to give all the care she can to her unborn.

Weight loss after birth

It is an acknowledged fact that after birth most babies tend to lose weight generally the first 5-7 days after birth. The growth and weight of the baby is often a frequently asked question by parents. Paediatricians often monitor the overall growth of newborn babies by keeping a regular check on their weight gain or loss pattern. A child who is being formula fed and not given the feed of a mother is expected to lose 5% of the birth rate within the first few days of birth though most of the babies regain the lost weight with the passing of 14-15 days of their life. Some of the common reasons for weight loss in newborn babies include;

  • Breast feeding and formula feeding have significant impact on a child’s health. The nutrients that a child gets from their mother’s milk will always be more beneficial for the body in comparison to formula feeding.
  • An undetected sickness or mild fever may subdue the hunger of the baby making him irritant and the loss of appetite decreases weight.
  • If the baby loses unexpected weight rapidly after birth it may be because of inadequate fluid intake by the body. Dehydration causes lethargy and interrupts the feeding pattern of children. Some of the major symptoms that indicate towards a doctor’s appointment are; dry lips, loose skin, sunken eyes and excess wet diapers a day.
  • Monitoring the baby’s weight by maintaining proper charts and noting their feeding patterns is a crucial step for all parents that doctors suggest after birth.

What Factors Contribute to Your Newborn Baby Weight?

Newborn Baby Weight

There are many factors that are responsible for your child’s weight. The pregnancy of the mother has a major impact on the child. Improper nourishment may lead problems like autism, or physical deformities in the infant. It is the responsibility of every parent that they monitor the mother’s diet during pregnancy. Some of the major factors that affect the weight of a child are;

Gestation period

The gestation period or the time and duration of the pregnancy is a prime factor that affects the weight of the baby. An average baby spends 38-40 weeks in their mother’s womb. They draw all the major nutrients and minerals from the mother. If a baby is born way before the stimulated due date, they are referred as premature and require extra care. Their weight is lesser in comparison to others and this puts their life in danger. Therefore gestation time is an important determinant of the baby’s weight.

Prenatal care

The prenatal growth taken by mothers determines the weight and health of the baby. During pregnancy a mother has to take care of many things and change her daily routine to ensure a healthy baby. Mothers are suggested to select a gynaecologist and set prior appointments spread throughout her pregnancy to keep a check on the development of the baby. The prenatal tablets suggested by the doctor must not be ignored and taken regularly.

Healthy diet

A healthy diet before and after birth is a must for the mother and the baby. Since a baby is connected to their mother directly by the placenta they share all the vitamins, minerals as well as toxins that the mother consumes. This makes the infant dependent on the mother before and after birth for nutrients. Thus a mother’s diet should not only be fulfilling but rich in vitamins and minerals as well. Mothers must take good care of themselves to eventually take care of the baby also.

Environmental factors

Environmental factors including excess exposure to harmful fumes during pregnancy negatively affects the baby. A mother should stop any alcohol intake as that causes abnormalities in the baby. Second hand or smoke fume intake causes mental deformities in the child as it increases the level of toxins in the child’s body.

Yoga

Yoga during pregnancy under trained supervision positively affects the health of the mother and child. Gentle exercises with their spouse’s help increases the amount of oxygen received by the child. Thus small exercises with proper rest will improve the health of the child and help him better absorb the minerals and vitamins from the mother.

Many babies go through growth spurts within the first few months of their birth and require all the nutrients they could take from their mothers. Other factors such as multiple births or birth to triplets may affect the weight of the children as the nutrition provided by the mother is divided amongst the infants in the womb. Mothers should ensure a proper gap in their pregnancies for not only the health of the baby but their own health also. The age of the mother and the presence of any disease such as diabetes or high blood pressure results in complications during the pregnancy.

Thus it is important for the parents to understand the need to take proper rest and a healthy diet for the welfare of their children. It is always advisable to keep in touch with your doctors and attend all the visits they set for your child. This continuous up and down in your child’s weight is just a part of the amazing journey of parenting.

Hope this article was of help for all our parents!! Please share your comments/queries/tips with us and help us create a world full of Happy and Healthy Babies!!

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