Failure to Thrive: Signs and Symptoms

What are the signs and symptoms of failure to thrive?

Growth is carefully monitored by your primary care provider when your child has a regular checkup. Weight and height are tracked alongside established growth curves. While there are many shapes and sizes of people, all children should demonstrate consistent growth.

Normal growth is particularly important in the first year of life, when growth rates are rapid. In order to fuel the growth of bones and muscles, a child must be taking in an appropriate number of calories and a balance of fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.

The classic early sign of failure to thrive is a child who has normal skeletal and head growth but whose weight gain is faltering. It is critical to evaluate a child at this point, because decreased or slow weight gain or weight loss can ultimately affect how tall a child is able to grow. Children with failure to thrive may also show decreased energy and enthusiasm for play.