Raising a baby is not an easy task. And the most difficult part of this task is feeding. Babies’ appetites are a changing process according to their growth spurts. In case that your baby loses his appetite, it would be a very distressing and difficult period, no matter what stage of life your baby is at. Anyway, you have to be sure that when babies become hungry, they will eat. In this blog, we will share with you the signs, causes, and treatment of loss of appetite in babies.
Signs of loss of appetite in babies
There are a lot of symptoms of loss of appetite in babies. The main one is an aversion to food. The baby refuses any kind of food even if his most favorite. The rejection of food can be followed by:
What are the Causes of Loss Of Appetite In Babies?
If you don’t know the causes of loss of appetite, it would be a big concern. So, it is important to know the causes that make your baby experience a loss of appetite. In case that your baby is healthy, a temporary loss of appetite is considered very normal. Loss of appetite, in general, doesn't mean that your baby has any problems or health issues. It could be because of the baby's development process. Causes of Loss Of Appetite In Babies include:
1. Illnesses: like adults, during having some health issues like fever, cold, and gas formation, your baby’s appetite will be affected.
2. Growth: the first six months are the fastest growth period in a baby's life. Then, the growth rate eventually slows down from 6-12 and slows farther when he was 12-18 months as in this period the baby doesn't need a lot of calories. So, it's normal for a 15-month baby to eat less than when he used to eat when he was 12 months.
3. Teething: when your baby’s teeth start to appear on his gum line, he would be suffering from loss of appetite because of his inflamed gums.
4. Introducing solid food: after reaching the fourth or sixth month, you may introduce solid food for your baby, like whole-grain foods. Then your baby may not be hungry for a long time because fiber food will make his tummy full. Be sure to introduce the food gradually and in small quantities.
5. Vaccination: some vaccinated babies could have a fever. And in this case, vaccination pain and fever making your baby lose his appetite.
6. Sore throat: A sore throat caused by a viral infection can be a reason for losing your baby’s appetite. A sore throat can also cause difficulty to your baby while swallowing which could be the reason for the loss of your baby’s appetite.
7. Weather: During hot weather, your baby may lose his appetite and find regular meals uncomfortable. Try to offer healthy food which would be lighter for his tummy. Also, in cold weather, your baby’s body burns a lot of calories to stay warm but during the hot weather, he will not use energy to keep his body temperature. So, he may not eat as before.
Tips to improve the loss of appetite in babies
- Increase Zinc level: low zinc amount in your baby’s body may lead to losing his appetite. So, try to offer foods like chicken and cashew nuts which may increase his appetite.
- Make gaps between meals: Experts recommend waiting three or four hours between meals to be sure that the baby has digested their meals. And if you don’t maintain the gap, he may not eat fully.
Loss of appetite in babies can become a challenge for moms. There are various reasons why babies lose their appetite. In common cases it is harmless, but if it continues for more than one week, you have to see the doctor. It can be a dangerous matter as it causes nutritional deficiencies in your baby.