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Special Issues With Low Weight Babies


baby on hospital bed with toque on head



Babies who weigh less than 2.5 kilograms (5.5 pounds) at birth are considered "low birth weight" babies.  

Some, but not all, are born preterm.

About one third of low birth weight babies are born full term (40 weeks gestation). But they may still face some of the same complications and risks as preterm babies. 

Skin-to-skin contact should be encouraged. This will keep the baby warm and support extra breastfeeding. You may need extra help with breastfeeding. Once you’re home, it’s important that your baby be placed on his or her back while sleeping.

It can be scary to have a low birth weight baby. Don’t be afraid to ask question of healthcare providers on your baby’s health and how to hold and feed him or her. 

Resources & Links:

Labor and Delivery
Growth and Development, Newborn

Last Updated: August 12, 2013