At what age do boys grow out of their mothers?

The length and weight mass
after the first year of life

Child | Development, physical | Investigations

You can tell whether your child is developing well by its height and weight, among other things. If the child makes a satisfied impression and does not show any clear signs of weight loss, you can leave the weighing and measuring to the pediatrician as part of the preventive medical check-ups. However, the children often have a lot of fun watching their own growth using a yardstick at home.

That is how much children grow on average per year

  • Babies: 25 centimeters
  • Primary school students: 4 centimeters
  • Adolescent boys: 13 centimeters
  • Girls in puberty: 7 centimeters

Children's bones can grow because they have so-called cartilaginous growth plates at their ends. After puberty, when there are enough sex hormones in the body, these growth plates shrink and finally ossify. In this way, in the X-ray image, one can infer how much a child will still grow or whether its growth has already been completed.

Growth spurts or steady growth?

One should not forget that the weight of the child depends on various factors such as body size, gender, diet and exercise behavior. Children suddenly gain weight as they grow, this is completely normal. However, after a growth spurt, a child can be rather underweight for some time. It is not always easy to determine what weight is normal for a child. In any case, it is not enough to weigh the child once and use this individual measurement as an indication of the weight development. The measurement result is only a snapshot. In order to be able to make statements about whether the weight of children is normal according to their age, the weight development must be considered over a longer period of time. It is the same with children's growth.

Well informed

Healthy growth

Too fat children

Too thin children

Interview: Dr. med. Stefanie Graf on stunted growth in children

How is it measured?

Your pediatrician will enter the measured data in a growth table, the so-called somatogram (percentile curve). Here the values ​​of your child can be compared with the standard values ​​for height and body weight in the respective age group. Girls and boys are assessed differently, both over time and in terms of the absolute amount. Incidentally, up to the age of two, measurements are taken lying down and then standing. This explains why the growth curves all have a small kink at this point - we are slightly smaller when we are standing than when we are lying down.

The growth curve (somatogram)

The somatograms have three percentage lines (percentiles): 3, 50 and 97 percent. If your child moves around 50 percent, this means that half of all children of this age are heavier and taller than their own, the other half lighter or smaller. So your child corresponds exactly to the mean. If it is around 75 percent, it is larger or heavier than average, but 25 percent of those of the same age are larger or heavier. It is also possible that your child is 80 percent on the growth curve but 60 on the weight curve.

When is growth no longer normal?

If your child's height and / or weight are above or below normal, there is nothing to worry about. It is much more important that it develops parallel to the normal curve.

One speaks of a growth disorder only if the growth of the children is abnormal for a period of at least half a year. Jumps up or down (for example at the age of four at the 50 percent mark, i.e. as large as the average, but only at 30 percent at the age of five) should be taken seriously and discussed with the pediatrician. They could be a warning sign of short stature or tall stature.


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Frequent question on the subject

If a very rough estimate of your baby's adult height is enough, double their height when they are two years old.

How big a child ultimately becomes is very much genetically determined, i.e. it depends on the height of the parents. The likely ...

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News ticker

The door frame for the smartphone | 14.09.2016

Who else knows the horizontal lines on the door frame with the date and the name of the child? In the past, parents used to record the growth of their child in this way - mostly on their birthday. Today they use the new Child-Growth app, developed by the Pediatric Endocrinological Center Zurich (PEZZ). Parents can use it to track their child's height, weight and body mass index (BMI) over a selected period of time and compare the values ​​with those of Swiss children of the same age. Thanks to the stored standard values, you can immediately see whether the child is developing properly. If not, it could be a sign of chronic illness. Child-Growth is now available free of charge and runs on iOS8 or Android 4 and higher. In addition to German, the app is now also available in French and English.

News ticker

Children are getting bigger and bigger: Researchers from the Center for Pediatrics at the University of Bonn have found that children are bigger today than they were 30 years ago. The 7 to 10 year olds are 1 to 1.5 cm taller today. The length of birth changed only slightly by 0.2 cm. The development of physical maturation (first menstruation in girls), on the other hand, is still constant at around 13 years. The authors report that body growth is an important indicator of the socio-economic situation of a society, especially the quality of nutrition. (swissmom news ticker June 18, 2012)

Ripe earlier and earlier: A recent US study with 1239 girls between the ages of six and eight shows that puberty now occurs two years earlier in girls than in their mothers and 3 months earlier than 7 years ago. The age at which it starts depends largely on whether the girl is thin or fat. Breast growth can begin in overweight girls as early as the age of nine. Ethnicity only seems to play a role: African-American and Hispanic-American girls are more often overweight, which is why their breasts develop earlier than those of white or Asian girls. (swissmom news ticker, January 15, 2014)

Too small child - grain to blame? Celiac disease, a gluten intolerance, not only leads to digestive disorders in children, but also to growth retardation, bone deformities and blood clotting disorders. A Finnish study has now shown how important the preventive medical check-ups are: If the growth of children is regularly checked by the pediatrician, celiac disease can be detected much earlier. The analysis of the data showed that girls were smaller than their healthy peers two years before being diagnosed with celiac disease, and boys with celiac disease were shorter than their peers one year before being diagnosed. (swissmom news ticker, June 28, 2015)

Last update: 26-04-21, BH