Interesting fact: what are the signs of growing height?

March 19, 2021 | By NuBest
Childhood and adolescence are arguably the two periods in which we witness and experience the biggest changes to our body, from the growth of hair to the replacement of baby teeth by permanent ones. Among these changes, the increases in height and weight aren’t to be missed. In fact, as kids mature into teenagers and then into adults, their bodies continually go through significant physical growth, including two major growth spurts. The former growth spurt takes place in the first year of our lives whereas the latter occurs during puberty. It is during these growth spurts that height grows at the fastest rate, up to four inches per year. Let’s find out what the signs of growth spurts are.

Baby growth spurts

Baby growth spurts are the time when babies have more intense periods of growth. Some signals when babies are experiencing a growth spurt can be that they change their sleep patterns, want to nurse more frequently, or become fussier.

Having to deal with these signs of growth spurts might make parents think that they last forever. However, growth spurts generally last a few weeks or days. This growth period, unlike popular belief, is not just about size. They involve development as well in that babies are slowly learning new skills.

The patterns of baby growth spurts vary between individuals; yet, there are quite a few growth spurts during the first year, specifically:

  • 1-3 weeks of age

  • 6 weeks

  • 3 months

  • 6 months

  • 9 months [1].

As every baby is unique, they can have less noticeable or dramatic growth spurts. So long as the baby produces dirty and wet diapers, eats frequently enough, and follows their own curve on the growth chart, their growth is good and healthy.

Teenage growth spurts

Similar to baby growth spurts, there are different patterns for teenage growth spurts. Some teens experience it pretty late while others have it early. Still, on average, a major growth spurt during puberty occurs at the age of 10-14 for boys and 8-13 for girls.

This rapid growth phase may continue until boys are 16 or 17 years old whereas it ends by 15 years of age for most girls. Once their growth plates close, teenagers can no longer increase height naturally [2].

Teenage growth spurts are controlled by two sex hormones - estrogen in girls and testosterone in boys. During adolescence, these sex hormones boost the production of growth hormone, thereby causing an increase in bone mineralization and vertical body growth, eventually making them grow taller rapidly.

Signs that you’re going through a growth spurt

  • Your pants keep getting short. If your new pants no longer fit your leg length in a matter of months, it’s likely that you’re experiencing a pubertal growth spurt. When puberty hits, growth spurts can result in a three-inch height gain for boys on average. For girls, however, the height increase is less dramatic, averaging at two inches a year.

  • Your feet are too big for your shoes. Pubertal growth spurts start from the extremities and work their way in. The pants and shoes are probably the easiest signs to notice when a teen has a growth spurt. According to studies, an early indicator of a growth spurt is frequent changes in shoe size.

  • Tighter clothes. The fat gain before growth spurts can make your clothes become tight around the thighs and waist. During puberty, this change accelerates and results in weight gain around the thighs, hips, buttocks, and waist for girls. Unlike girls, boys might gain weight around their belly.

  • Rise in the teen’s appetite. The significant physiological and physical changes throughout puberty increase teen’s nutritional needs. This would cause increased appetite for teens. Such an increase is more prominent in boys than in girls.

  • You’ve got larger joints with big bones. Different joints in your body will become bigger, such as wrists, elbows, and knees.

  • Your skin is changing. Due to hormonal changes, there are changes to your skin including the appearance of acne, oily skin, facial hair, and pigmentation. Growth spurts make these changes more intense.

  • And so is your voice. Scientists have stated that a growth spurt is likely to decelerate once a characteristic adult voice is developed by teens. Compared with girls, change in voice is more obvious in teenage boys.

  • You start to have a strong body odor, eww! The presence of body odor normally indicates growth spurts. This is because adrenal androgens are produced more during puberty, resulting in body odor. Despite this, in some cases, children with delayed puberty also show signs of strong body odor. 

  • Secondary sex characteristics grow as well. It is during this pubertal growth spurt that sexual maturation accelerates. Sexual maturation can be signaled by the enlargement of testicles, breast development, and enhanced distribution of pubic hair. Although technically these changes are not specific to growth spurts, they are quite obvious around that time.

What to do when a teen is having a growth spurt

There are a few things parents can do to help ensure that your teen is growing and developing normally. As puberty is the golden period to maximize height growth, you should take care of the teen’s nutrition, physical activity, and sleep to support them to reach their full height potential.

  • Proper nutrition. Did you know that nutrition can unlock your teen’s maximum potential height? Indeed, providing the growing body with essential nutrients will support bone growth and bone strength, thereby facilitating favorable conditions for the body to grow vertically and achieve or even surpass its genetically predetermined height. That’s why parents should ensure their teenage children have a balanced and nutritious diet filled with essential vitamins and minerals. Another option for busy parents who can’t cook for their kids every day is to use height growth supplements. They supply the body with bone-nourishing nutrients that are lacking in daily diets. However, it should be noted that you should only purchase from high-quality and credible brands.

 

  • Adequate sleep. Depending on the age and physical conditions, sleep patterns vary between individuals. The average required sleep for most teenagers ranges from 8 to 12 hours a night. Sleep provides the necessary rest for growing bodies to develop well. More importantly, growth hormone is secreted the most during deep sleep. As a result, parents should encourage their kids to get enough sleep for optimal height growth.

 

  • Regular sports or exercises. Playing sports or doing exercises regularly stimulates growth hormone production, which in turn makes teenagers grow taller. Sports and exercises such as swimming, skipping, basketball, volleyball, and cycling are highly recommended for teenagers if they want to increase height fast. Besides, frequent involvement in physical activity also allows them to maintain a healthy weight as well as promotes good health and fitness.

 

 

Before you know it, your teenage child will be an adult. Be that as it may, it isn’t easy and they have a lot of growing to do to get there. Therefore, it’s extremely important to take good care of them in terms of nutrition, sleep, and exercise during puberty in order to make the best use of growth spurts and help them reach their maximum height potential.

SOURCES

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THE ABOVE INFORMATION IS FOR REFERENCE ONLY and shall not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or starting any medication or treatment without discussing it with a qualified health professional.