A growth chart helps you and your paediatrician to check and compare the health with that of the other children with same characteristics.
Everything can be tracked through it and you can make the required alterations with the diet or the environment in which the baby prospers.
The process starts with the birth only. At the childbirth, the doctor note down the baby’s height, weight and the head circumference and relate it with what it should actually be. For some hint, an average newborn has 7.25 pounds of weight and should be 19.5 inches long. Head circumference of a baby boy should be about 13.5 inches while that of a girl be 13.3 inches, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.
Similarly, with the gradual intervals you have to take your baby to the paediatrician and check for its height, weight and the related stuff. While, there are no ideal measurements, which should be matched against the baby’s weight and height, but there is a growth pattern, which should be followed.
One can solely rely upon the height and weight calculator for children as it tells you about all the required and ideal information according to the age and gender of the baby. The information helps parents to evaluate and make judgements about the growth pattern and development of their baby.
- The first five years are termed to be the developing stones of a baby’s life. During this phase, not only the physical growth takes place but the growth of nervous system and brain is also there. It lay the foundation stones for baby’s learning abilities, future development and achievement and thus is the vital phase of life. Any mistake during this time cannot be afforded.
- 75% of the adult height of a child is attained by the age of 8 to 9. It is important to keep track of the growth of your child. Early detection of an aberration can help in taking corrective measures otherwise in the later time, the situation can get worse.
- By the age of 18, a child’s height generally becomes double of their height at 2 years of age.
- Talking about the weight, babies triple their birth-weight by the end of their first year.
The rates of growth are not uniform throughout the whole of childhood. In the first few years, the child grows much rapidly than the later years.
Babies usually double their weight within five months and triple it at one year of age.
Even the height at one year of age is one and a half times more than that at birth. After this phase, babies grow at much slower rates. The next time when height and weight of the child shoots up is in their adolescence.
Boys and girls do not follow the same chart. This is because, on an average, boys are slightly taller and heavier than girls, and thus, their growth patterns are different.
Things for a better growth chart
The growth pattern altogether depends on the adequate food and proper care of your little one. However, emotional disturbances, serious neglections, starvation or illness could hamper your baby’s overall growth and would make it dip downwards.
- There should always be a regular, periodic check on the growth and development of the child to track the most important points out of it.
- It would be more appropriate and help more in accessing the accurate information than a single recording.
- The recommendation is, a child should be get checked at monthly intervals during the first year, after every two months during the second year and after every three months subsequently up to five years of age.
WHO provides the charts for babies and infants to track the development of the baby from birth to two years of age. There are various tables and data required for certain calculations to be done in order to get the accurate status.
The calculator provides you with your infant’s weight percentile according to its age. The percentile represents the comparison between your baby’s weights with the other children. It tells, what percentage of babies weighs more than your baby and what percentage weigh less than your baby.
Let us take an example to have a better view on this, there is a sample of 100 babies. In it, a percentile value of 60 percent means your baby weighs more than 60 babies and weighs less than the other 40 babies.
A percentile of 50% depicts the mean or average weight. A value, which is greater than 50 percent means a baby weighs more than the average and vice versa. This does not mean, your baby is underweight or overweight. Consult your paediatrician to get the accurate weight and status.
You can have a look at this height and weight chart for babies for a better understanding of the growth patterns.
Exceptions to the average growth patterns
There are some exceptions to the average growth patterns. Some children might differ from the entire group of their age due to the following reasons.
- There are some babies that start with their feeding a bit late due to some medical conditions. These children are termed as ‘pre-term babies’ as they are born much early than the expected date. So, starting somehow late could affect their growth process. The weight of these children remains less for a long time as compared to the children of the same age.
- Another bunch is known as ‘small for date babies’. These babies make a remarkable growth in their earlier days, but on the whole, they tend to grow slow while showing low position on the normal growth graph.
- There are some babies who get ill or sick immediately after birth or may be in the first week of the birth. Sick ones do not gain much weight as much of it is drained off due to the illness and thus need proper care to shift the growth curve upwards.
- The babies who are formula-fed since the birth only, might not lose any weight in the initial days. Also, they might gain very swiftly in the first days which all depends up on the formula food they are been given. The gain will increase eventually with the further addition of solids to it.
At this point of time, one should remember that a baby, who is gaining weight faster than nature intended, would never gain length to match it. There will be an imbalance between height and weight of the child. A person must realise that a baby will get obese when gaining more and more weight rather than simply growing larger.