Infant Health — Gaining Weight

At his Frisco, Texas, private pediatrics office, Dr. Jay Schwartz carefully monitors his infant patients to ensure that they’re developing as expected. Before opening his clinic, Dr. Jay Schwartz received his MD from the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University and completed his post-doctoral education in pediatrics at Riley Hospital for Children.

Following birth, infants grow very quickly and tend to follow a predictable pattern of growth, which pediatricians monitor via regular checkups. For instance, a newborn usually doubles its birth weight by about 5 months old and triples it by its first birthday, gaining up to five ounces weekly from about 6 to 12 months of age.

If an infant exhibits sluggish weight gain, it may not be cause for alarm, as some healthy infants are outliers who they gain weight more slowly or quickly than normal. However, sluggish growth can indicate underlying health problems such as difficulty digesting food.

Physicians may order diagnostic tests to get at the root cause of weight gain problems. From there, they can work with parents to design long-term solutions that promote healthy weight.

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