Has your baby stopped eating or drinking? A baby’s loss of appetite can be quite worrying.
Let’s take a look at common reasons, as well as red flags that your baby is ill and may need medical attention.
I have a 4-month-old baby, who suddenly stopped eating. She was a very good eater, she used to drink 3-4oz every 2-3 hours, but out of nowhere, she has lost her interest in drinking her milk. I am very worried about her at the moment, it has been 1 week that she has started to have no interest in drinking.
She plays and she still a happy baby.
Reasons Why A 4-Month-Old Baby May Lose Appetite
It is easy to relate to your worrying – how much the baby eats is probably one of the most common reasons for parents worrying for their babies, me included.
I don’t know how many times I’ve rushed off to the doctor with my babies – only to find out that they are gaining weight as they should, or that the next day they are teething or a cold has started.
Possible Reasons Why A Baby Loses Their Appetite
There are many reasons why a baby loses his or her appetite:
- At four months old, one reason is actually that they start growing less rapidly and hence might be less hungry than earlier.
- Another reason at this age may be teething.
- Also, the minute you start introducing solid foods, some babies become less interested in their milk.
- In addition, babies that have recently been ill or are about to become ill often have less appetite.
- And then finally the appetite simply varies– just like for adults!
It is a very good sign that your baby is happy and playing. Is she also wetting her diapers as usual? If she is, then all these are very good signs that she actually gets the milk she needs.
How Much a 4-Month-Old Baby Should Be Eating and How to Know if They Eat Enough
A 4-month-old baby can consume 6 to 7 ounces of milk, averaging to 6 to 8 feedings in a day. But this can vary since not all babies have the same appetite. The appetite varies per age, per baby.
Many parents start introducing solids at this age. Look for the baby’s readiness and his capability in receiving solid foods (i.e., good neck control, can sit on a high chair without falling flat on his face).
It is common for babies to lose interest in milk once they start eating solids. However, solid food at this age is just supplemental. Usually, the baby gets enough nutrients from breastmilk or milk before 6 months of age and even up to around 1 year old. Moreover, if your baby is active and playful as usual, then this means that he is getting enough milk.
Red flags to watch out for when your baby stopped eating or drinking
If she isn’t wetting her diaper or showing other signs of dehydration (poor skin turgor, sunken eyeballs, dry mouth, unusual drowsiness, or sunken fontanels, dry eyes when crying, or not gaining weight), then you need to take her to the doctor immediately.
Look for other signs or symptoms that may come with the loss of appetite:
- Vomiting or vomiting after feeding
- Bloody stools
- Progressive cough
- Difficulty in breathing
- Incessant crying
All these point to a serious infection or disease. It is best to visit your baby’s doctor immediately.
However, if she doesn’t seem ill at all, I’d probably observe for a few more days. One of the most common reasons why they loss appetite during this age is that their gums become swollen and a tooth is about to break out.
Another thing you can do is to bring her to your health nurse to weigh her and see if she is losing weight. There you can also discuss if you should start introducing solid foods to her or any other actions needed if her lost interest in milk prevails.
I hope this helps! Unless your daughter shows signs of illness or is losing weight, just relax and enjoy her and trust that she knows when she is hungry.
Here is another discussion about 4-month-old babies that won’t eat.
Hope this helps,
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