Failure to Thrive In Babies – Everything You Should Know

When you bring your baby home from the hospital, he or she becomes your sole responsibility. It is likely that you’re going to be sitting around the home worrying about your child’s health for many years to come. This is completely normal and I have been in your shoes. One of the worst case scenarios is spotting the failure to thrive symptoms in your child! With this in mind, it is essential to learn all about this condition and how to stop it, before it is too late. Within this guide, you will learn all about failure to thrive in babies.

failure to thrive in babies

What is Failure To Thrive?

As the name suggests, failure to thrive is nothing more than your baby failing to thrive in life. The term is often used in an assortment of different medical fields and can pertain to animals, adults, children and newborns. Typically, it is associated with the inability to gain weight or excessive weight loss.


What Causes Failure to Thrive?

Many parents want to be able to discover the causes of the ailment, so they can avoid them with caution. The truth of the matter is that there are numerous different causes and they are typically broken down into two categories, organic and nonorganic. It is possible for a combination of both to play a role and have a detrimental effect on your baby. Below, you will be able to discover the organic and nonorganic causes of this condition.

Organic – For organic causes, you will want to look at your child’s overall health. Are they suffering from specific ailments, which could cause them to lose or not gain weight? Do they suffer from stomach or acid reflux? Other natural causes are asthma, UTIs, tongue tie and cleft palate. If the ailment causes the metabolism to be thrown out of whack, it is possible for your child to suffer from this condition.

Nonorganic – Nonorganic methods are usually brought about, by the caregiver. If the child isn’t given a proper diet, they will obviously falter in this area. Improperly feeding the baby and not sticking with a regular feeding schedule can also cause problems! It is vital to make sure that your baby receives a sufficient diet, which will provide him or her with the vitamins and minerals needed to thrive!

Finally, you should know that it is also possible for your child to suffer, due to a mixed of these abnormalities.


Failure to Thrive Symptoms

Although it is vital to visit a doctor, if you believe your child is suffering from this type of ailment, it is also a good idea to look for the common symptoms. For your convenience and consideration, these will be listed below.

  • Frequent constipation
  • Mood swings and irritability
  • Lethargy and constant sleepiness
  • Continuous crying
  • Size, white and circumference of the head aren’t up to par, with the recommended growth charts
  • Growth has slowed and the baby is unable to put on weight

If you spot any of these symptoms, it is absolutely vital to make sure that you meed with your baby’s doctor immediately! By doing so, you will be able to rectify the problem, or find out the source and go from there.


Treatments for Failure to Thrive

Overall, the treatments vary, depending on the specific source of the problem. If your child is suffering from a medical condition, which results in the excessive weight loss, you will need to address that problem first. If your child is negatively impacted, by improper diet, it is vital to correct the diet and begin supply your baby with proper nutrients and a suitable amount of calories.

If the child hasn’t yet been taken home, it is possible for the doctor to keep them in the hospital for an extended stay, until they’re able to identify the problem.


Prognosis of Failure to Thrive

Typically, the problem can be corrected and usually is quickly. Still, there are some rare cases, in which the child suffers from the problem for too long. If this occurs, it is likely that the child will suffer from growth and developmental complications. If the problem is identified and rectified early, it is entirely possible for the condition to pass, without further complication.



At the end of the day, failure to thrive isn’t always life threatening, but it can cause complications, if not treated quickly. Therefore, you should make sure that your baby receives a healthy diet and a sufficient amount of calories and nutrients. Also, if you notice anything out of the ordinary, it is vital to meet with a medical professional! Remember that regular checkups with your baby’s doctor can result in the detection and treatment of the problem, at a more rapid pace!