As a parent, you'll naturally want your child to stay on track when it comes to their growth. While genetics definitely play a large role in how and to what degree they'll grow, there are also ways in which you can contribute! Here is a brief look into what the growth chart entails and a few tips on how to keep your child on track.
Understanding Your Child's Growth Chart
During your child's wellness exams, their pediatrician may display where they fall on the growth chart. This is a chart that will tell you what percentile your child currently is situated in regarding their height and weight. This can be helpful since it will also show past metrics that can help gauge their growth progression and future expectations. It is helpful to remember that this chart range does not necessarily mean your child's height or weight is behind. Some children with a lower percentile, for instance, may simply be considered to be on the petite side. Your child's pediatrician will communicate to you if there is any cause for concern regarding their growth.
A Good Night's Sleep
One of the best things to help your child grow is getting a good night's sleep on a regular basis. Depending on the age of your child, you may or may not be still dealing with the occasional and often-dreaded sleep regression! But fret not and take comfort in knowing that sleep regressions will always pass eventually. Work on keeping bedtime low-key; turn down the lights, give your child a warm bath and snuggle up with a bedtime story or two before tucking them in. This will help your child naturally associate bedtime with relaxing and preparing to rest for the night as well as regulate their circadian rhythms.
Dealing with a picky eater is a very common concern among many parents. While you would hope your child would eagerly devour plates of crisp vegetables, they may have other plans! The trick here is to be patient with your child. Being picky when it comes to food is completely normal in a small child's development and as long as they are growing at a good pace, is typically not a cause for concern. Be consistent and put vegetables and fruits on their plates with every meal, being sure to include a safe food that they already enjoy. If you are worried about your child falling behind on the growth chart, speak with their pediatrician regarding supplements such as nutritional milkshakes that can help get your child the vitamins and minerals they need.
If you have additional questions about your child's growth, speak with a child healthcare professional or visit a clinic near you.