Stunted Growth Problems: Symptoms, Causes and Solutions


Does your child have a standard growth rate? Do you feel that he’s lacking something? One thing every parent can provide their kids with, for a bright and healthy future in which they are achieving their life goals with no health issues, is good physical growth. In general, the increase in height and weight with age is referred to as physical growth. On a broader scale, we can say that hair grows, permanent teeth replace the milk ones, and the puberty hits eventually. Everything happens in a strategic manner and a pattern set by nature. However, there are many children who don’t get proper physical growth and it starts right from their childhood. There can be several reasons behind it but before we discuss those reasons, let’s understand the “normal” growth first. The normal growth in height as per age is:

  • About 10 inches in 0 to 12 months.
  • About 5 inches in 1 to 2 years
  • About 3 1/2 inches a year during the age of 2 to 3  
  • About 2 inches a year starting from the age of 3 till puberty.

Causes of growth problems

There can be several reasons that cause growth problems. Here are a few causes that are detected in most of the cases.

  • Inherited shortness
  • Underweight
  • Delayed Puberty
  • Chronic diseases that affect the whole body
  • Lack of well-balanced diet.
  • Severe stress or Endocrine (hormone) diseases such as diabetes Genetic Disorders
  • Deficiency of growth hormone
  • Congenital problems in the tissues responsible for the growth
  • Abnormal Skeletal system

Symptoms of growth problems

If a child doesn’t grow 2 inches every year after 2 years of birth, you should be concerned. This is the primary symptom associated with growth problems. There are other noticeable symptoms that can easily be detected and should be cured at the right time. Those symptoms include:

  • Troubled with physical skills such as rolling over, sitting up, standing, and walking
  • Lagging social and mental skills
  • Secondary sexual characteristics in pubescence are delayed

Investigation and Prevention

The best possible way of investigating growth problems is to visit a doctor for regular check-ups and take suggested methods for prevention. This will help you keep a track of their weight and height and a compared analysis of your child’s data with other children of the same age. It makes it very easier to detect any health problems if present. Apart from visiting a doctor, there are few things that you as a parent can do from your end. You can make sure that all the critical factors responsible for your child’s overall growth are met. It includes:  

  • Proper rest: Sleep requirements change as per the age. For instance, adults just need 8 hours of sleep but most kids need an average of 10 to 12 hours of sleep per night.
  • A balanced diet: It provides all the essential vitamins and minerals needed to reach their full growth potential.
  • Exercise: Many kids go overweight but activities like bicycling, hiking, in-line skating, sports, or any enjoyable activity can help in maintaining a healthy weight.

If you think that there’s a problem with your child’s health, talk to a specialist doctor for better assistance and guidance.