Attention to developmental milestones!

In general, the fact that a child is more or less developed than others of the same sex and age is not a reason for alarm. However, there are developmental milestones that serve as a guide to see if your child looks very different from his little friends or does not show the typical abilities of her age; In these cases it is advisable that you consult your pediatrician to rule out any medical problem.

There are some conditions that can predispose to an increased risk of developmental problems, such as premature birth, low birth weight, or environmental conditions (such as environmental risks from contamination); in this case, the pediatrician will probably want to do some additional tests.

Everyone involved in the child’s upbringing (parents, grandparents, caregivers, educators) can participate in developmental monitoring to see if she is meeting the milestones by acting, moving, playing, speaking, and learning.

There are checklists and even applications with which you can follow month by month and then year by year how your child evolves in various aspects:

  • Motor development
  • Development of intelligence.
  • Language development.
  • Social development.
  • Emotional development.

In routine visits the pediatrician also monitors development; If there is an indicator that has not been reached, it may be a red flag about a bigger problem that needs to be addressed and will warrant a more rigorous test or examination.

The growth curve

At each visit, the pediatrician will take note of the height, weight, head circumference (the measurement of the head by its largest part) and, after two years, the body mass index (BMI); This information is recorded in a table that will be part of your medical history and will be used to view the growth curve.

These measures are then compared to the standard (normal) range for children of the same sex and age. The same table will be used as your child grows.

The growth charts were developed from information obtained by measuring and weighing thousands of children; From these figures, the national average height and weight were established for each age and sex. These values ​​are called the percentile.

Many parents worry when their child’s measurements are smaller than those of most other children the same age; however there is a wide range for what is considered “normal”.

So that you can understand it better, I give you some examples of how the infant percentile works:

If your child is in the 10th percentile for weight, it means that 90% of the children weigh more than him, that is, he is below the average. On the contrary, if he is in the 90th percentile for weight, it means that he is well above the average: only 10% of the children are that weight.

It works the same with regard to height: if your child is in the 90th percentile, it means that only 10 children out of 100 are taller than your child, that is, at that age they are taller than the average. Conversely, if he is in the 10th percentile for height, it means that he is below average height.

When is there reason to worry?

  • When one of your child’s measurements stays below the 10th percentile or above the 90th percentile for her age.
  • If the head is growing too slowly or too fast when the measurement has been done for a while.

Abnormal growth on the growth charts is just a sign of a possible problem, more vigilance will be necessary to determine if it is a health problem that needs to be addressed.

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) offers a free app Milestone Tracker, it is available for Android devices such as iOs, in English and Spanish.

Quick guide for all ages:

Beyond the percentiles for height and weight, there are other signs that you should pay attention to to see if your child is acquiring the skills that correspond to her age.

Here is a quick guide -as an orientation- in the different stages; but it is important that you remember that each child develops at their own pace and therefore there may be some variations.

Newborn: At first he just wakes up to eat and cries as a sign that he is hungry, sleepy or something is bothering him. He moves his head, arms, and legs and makes a sucking motion if you bring something to his mouth. As the days go by, he reacts to the light, focuses his gaze, and holds whatever is put in his little hand.

Two months: he is already able to follow objects with his eyes, moves his head towards sounds, sucks his finger and makes some sounds; he also he begins to smile.

Four months: He mimics some facial movements and gestures, such as smiling or frowning, and cries in different ways to show hunger, sleepiness, or discomfort. He already controls his head better and turns it when he hears a sound; he also focuses his attention when they speak to him. He can roll over on his back and push off with his feet.

Six months: he is already more aware of himself and others: he likes to look at himself in the mirror, puts things in his mouth and may cry if he is held by a stranger. He also begins to emit sounds with some vowels and reacts when you call him by his name. He rolls over on his back and stomach, begins to sit up unsupported, crawls, and stands upright with assistance.

Nine months: He has favorite toys, points with his finger when he wants something and already understands when they say NO. She imitates gestures and sounds, claps and yells when you ignore her. She is already crawling, she can sit alone and stand holding onto something.

One year: When he wants something, he claims it by pointing to it, imitates gestures, expands his vocabulary, he can drink from a glass, grab a spoon in his hand, put and take things out of a container. Follow simple directions. She pulls to her feet and walks leaning on the furniture.

Two years: she Says sentences of two to four words, like “I want water.” She knows the parts of the body and the names of the known people. She can also point to objects or pictures when mentioned and follow simple directions. She is becoming more and more independent and challenging. She begins to play with other children.

Three years: At this age, she starts school, so she acquires many more skills, such as drawing simple geometric figures. He already forms sentences with several words, waits for his turn to play or speak, and follows daily routines. She can climb, go up and down stairs with alternating feet.

Four years: He already speaks very well, with long sentences and answers the questions that are asked. He names the colors and numbers and begins to write and use scissors. He begins to understand the concept of time. She can jump and stand on one foot, and catch a bouncing ball, use his imagination in games and help other children.

At 5 years: She is able to count to 10, write some letters and numbers. He distinguishes fantasy from reality and can tell short stories. He uses the cutlery, goes to the bathroom alone and is aware of the difference between the sexes. He can jump, leap forward, and swing. He wants to please friends and look like them.

Be attentive to the behavior of your child in the different stages of his growth; Remember that while early intervention is extremely important, intervention at any age can also be very helpful in helping him develop his full potential.

Do you have any other questions? Here I am ready to help you in whatever you require.

Related Posts
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required fields are marked *