Child Health and Diseases Specialist / Pediatric Infectious Diseases Specialist Dr. Serkan Atici talked about what families need to know about baby development.
The COVID-19 pandemic, whose first year we have left behind in the past months, has affected almost every aspect of life all over the world. Routine doctor check-ups, especially in infants and young children, where developmental follow-up is also important, are sometimes delayed. Early detection of developmental problems, taking the necessary precautions, and in some cases, making the treatment without delay will also prevent the health problems that the child may encounter in his later life. In this respect, parents should know some information for the health of children both in infancy and at other stages of life and they should have their babies followed up regularly in cooperation with physicians.
Every baby is unique and should be evaluated on its own.
exp. Dr. Serkan Aıcı said, “The point that needs to be known first is that every baby is unique and different from other babies. Especially its genetic structure, gender, birth weight and height, birth weeks, parent heights, nutritional characteristics, sleep patterns, diseases, exercises and a Factors affecting growth and development, such as environmental factors, are different for each baby.In other words, growth and development is multifactorial and according to these changes in children, although the calendar age is the same, development parameters such as height and weight may be different.In this respect, babies and children of similar months or ages “It is not right to compare with the other. The right thing is to make an evaluation according to scientific parameters and suggestions,” he said.
The development of babies begins in the womb. A baby born on the day of birth is about 3200-3300 g. In the days after birth, a certain amount of weight loss may occur due to the removal of fluid from the body. After about 10 days, he regains the weight he lost. In the first three months, it takes 150-250 grams per week, and between 3-6 months it takes 100-120 grams. In the first months, it is normal to take an average of 20-30 grams per day.
Between 9-12 months, it starts to take about 10-12 grams per day. At the age of one year, the average birth weight of the baby is expected to increase 3 times, and by the age of 2, it is expected to increase approximately 4 times. In the 1-3 year old age group, it is normal for the weight to increase by 250 grams per month. In this case, they can gain 2-2.5 kilograms per year.
The length of a newborn baby is about 50 centimeters. An 8 cm elongation is expected in the first three months and another 8 cm in the second three months. In the next trimester, there is an extension of approximately 4 cm and another 4 cm in the other trimester. By the age of one, it should reach 75 cm in length, which is approximately 1.5 times the birth length. Height grows 10-12 cm in total between 1-2 years of age and 7 cm in a year from 2 to 3 years old.
My baby’s weight is low (below the lower limit)
One of the most important factors for weight loss is nutrition. For the first 6 months, babies should be fed with breast milk. During this period, infants who cannot receive breast milk for various reasons can be fed with formula. In the sixth month, additional foods should be started, and if possible, they should be breastfed until the age of 2 years.
Problems related to breastfeeding should be reviewed, especially in infants younger than 6 months. In addition, the presence of concomitant disease, especially urinary tract infection, should be evaluated. Digestive parameters such as diarrhea or the presence of blood in the stool should be reviewed.
Older babies may experience loss of appetite and be picky about food. It is necessary to make eating fun without getting stubborn with the baby. Fun plates can be prepared to make eating fun. Trying to eat with a tablet or phone is one of the biggest mistakes. It is necessary to give nutritious foods rich in calories and nutrient content, even if the amount is small, to babies without appetite. Syrups containing vitamins and minerals should not be started without a doctor’s recommendation.
My baby is overweight (above the upper limit)
Scientific research has shown that some diseases such as insulin resistance, diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases and various cancer types in adults are related to wrong eating habits in childhood. One of the biggest responsibilities of parents is to give their children healthy eating habits. Family members should be good guides for the child, as children take family members as an example in this regard, as in many other subjects.
As a family, it is necessary to stay away from salty meals, excessive sugar consumption, fast food-style diet. It is necessary to pay attention to the consumption of the recommended foods according to the baby’s month. If your baby’s weight is above the upper limit according to the month in the charts, observe and try to figure out where the problem is. The amount of formula, the frequency of feeding and the reconstitution process should be reviewed in infants receiving formula. Wrong food consumption, excessive food consumption, etc. in older children. reasons should be considered. If no one is found, it would be appropriate to seek expert support. Some tests may be required. There may be changes in the approaches depending on the reason to be found.