MadSci Network: Medicine

Re: How can one predict a toddlers growth?

Date: Mon Jan 31 23:22:23 2000
Posted By: Mike Crawford, MadSci Admin
Area of science: Medicine
ID: 948318294.Me


Unfortunately, after some searching, I was unable to find a formula that people consistently use.  Here is an excerpt from that seems to make sense....

The first year of an infantís life is a time of astonishing change. During this time, a baby
will grow rapidly and achieve major developmental milestones, such as taking first
steps or maybe even saying some first words. On average, babies grow 10 inches (25
centimeters) in height while tripling birth weight in just the first year. 

Given all the growth that occurs in the first year of life, new parents may be surprised
when their child doesn't continue to grow through the roof. But no child continues the
rate of growth experienced during infancy. After age 1, a babyís growth slows
considerably, and by 2 years, growth usually continues at a fairly steady rate of
approximately 2 1/2 inches (6 centimeters) per year until adolescence.

No child grows at a perfectly steady rate throughout this period of childhood, however.
Weeks or months of slightly slower growth alternate with mini "growth spurts" in
normal children. Kids actually tend to grow a bit faster in the spring than during other
times of the year.
Another useful site is the Government Child Health Guide which has 
charts to show where other kids his age are at (he's almost off the chart at this point!) and possible scenarios to expect.  I have a 33 month old girl who was
off the charts in weight (heavy) for a long time, but has steadily come back to a more average weight, so any 'formula' would have likely been
wrong with her.  If your kid continues to grow at an alarming rate, it may indicate a hormonal problem, and you should see a pediatrician.

Good luck


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