Tag Archives: cleft lip

Failure to thrive in babies (FTT)

Failure to thrive (FTT) is the general description used for a baby who does not gain weight at the expected rate.


  • Genetic factors:

Small parents generally have babies who are small and who grow into small children.
Under feeding: Babies need 120 to 150 ml milk per kg of their body weight every day. If they receive less than that required amount, they will not gain weight in sufficient amount. There are certain reasons for underfeeding like,

  1. First-time parents who are feeding their baby on demand may not give enough food as babies do not always cry when they are hungry and may appear satisfied.
  2. Babies of low birth weight actually need more calories than those of normal birth weight. They need to make up for losing out on the valuable nutrients provided in the womb.
  3. Some premature babies tire easily when feeding and may sleep for longer periods.
    Some babies have sucking difficulties caused by cleft lip and palate.
    Difficulties with absorbing food: This includes,
    Cows milk intolerance
    Cystic fibrosis
    Coeliac disease
  • Physical disorders:

These are rare conditions, like heart disorders and pyloric stenosis.

Infection: Any infection or illness can temporarily affect baby’s health, like
Infections to ear, nose and throat, Gastroenteritis, Urinary tract infections
Whooping cough.

  • Emotional and social factors:

This includes safe, secure and happy home environmental is essential to a child’s health and well-being, this includes, Child abusing, this may be intentional, or neglecting a child is an unintentional way.Poor parenting skills or lack of support like mother or carer feeds incorrectly.Difficulty in mother and baby relationship or bonding or attachment, or mother may be in the post natal depression.Financial problems to parents. Living in poverty may find it difficult to meet all the needs of a young baby.

  • Signs and Symptoms: Failure to thrive can be noticed by GP or health visitor at the child clinic. Initially health visitors visit home to check the baby’s health, so it’s not necessary to visit the baby clinic that time.