Expected Baby Weight at 3-6 Months
Every baby grows at a different rate. Some babies have massive growth spurts, others take their time. When evaluating a child's health, it is very important to look not only at weight, but at the overall picture. Some children are very small and stay consistently small while growing at a normal rate. If a baby's general growth pattern suddenly changes, it may be a cause for concern. Overall, weight should not really be a concern as long as a child is happy, healthy, eating normally, and growing steadily.
Breastfed Baby Growth
Parents and their health care providers should remember that breastfed babies tend to weigh less during their first year, but this is normal and should not be cause for concern. According to a study performed at the University of California at Davis, breastfed babies and formula-fed babies gain weight similarly until around 4 months old. After this point, they have similar length and head circumference, but the breastfed babies gain weight slower. The breastfed babies end up leaner, which is actually healthier. At 12 months old, breastfed babies weigh an average of 1 pound less than formula-fed babies.
Normal Growth Patterns
An average baby weighs 7 lbs 4 oz at birth. From ages 3-6 months you can expect your baby to gain about half an ounce each day, a bit slower than he was gaining before. Overall he should be gaining around a pound or more each month during this period. Remember that temperament and body shape can also influence weight gain. Fussy, busy, and active babies burn more calories and therefore gain weight a little slower than calm and content babies. Some babies make gains in length before they gain in weight, while others do the opposite and gain weight before a big growth spurt.
At a regular checkup, the pediatrician may tell you where your baby is on the growth charts. These charts were developed by measuring thousands of children in order to find the normal ranges. If the pediatrician says that your child is in the 50th percentile for, weight, this means that 50% of the babies measured were lighter, and 50% of the babies measured were heavier. As long as your baby's weight is between the 10th and 90th percentiles, you do not need to be concerned.
Even if your baby is outside the normal range, as long as he is consistently in the same percentile his weight is fine. It is much healthier for a child to be in the 5th percentile for weight at every checkup, than it is for a child to be in the 50th percentile at one checkup and then the 20th percentile at the next, and then the 10th percentile at the next checkup. The World Health Organization, between 3 and 6 months, your baby should weigh between 10 pounds and 21 pounds. That's a big range.