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Introduction

Welcome to the Child & Adolescent Growth Center

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Normal growth is something most of us take for granted. Growth begins when a baby is conceived and continues throughout childhood and adolescence.

Growth is a complex process, which is influenced by many factors, such as genes, age, sex, physical health, emotional well-being, nutrition, and hormones. A child's most dramatic growth phases occur during fetal development, the first few years of life, and at the beginning of puberty.

There is a wide range of normal for both height and weight, and children who are smaller than their classmates may or may not have a health problem related to growth. In the United States there are more than 1.2 million children who are shorter than 98% of other children their age. Most of these children are healthy, but some do have a medical condition related to their stature. Some of these conditions may have long-lasting effects on a child’s growth and general health if they are not diagnosed and treated.

What happens when a child doesn't grow as expected? Why isn't my child growing taller? When is my child’s "growth spurt" going to happen? What is a growth disorder? Can anything be done? These pages are about your child's growth: what is normal and what can affect a child's growth. Information on how growth problems can be evaluated and treated and suggestions on helping your child deal with short stature are also included.

Last modified on: 30 June 2015