The beginning of teenage is usually marked with the puberty stage of an adolescent. This is the time they grow rapidly in the physical and sexual aspects. Some children grow tall, strong, break into their voices, etc. Whereas some children do not grow as fast. This is termed as failure to thrive.
This diagnosis is a fairly common on these days. The child is not to blame, in fact no one is. The doctors along with the family and child set out on a cooperative journey to set things straight. There may be many issues for instance genetics.
What is failure to thrive?
The condition was identified almost a century ago but hasn’t been graced with a proper medical definition yet. In grow taller 4 idiots written by Darwin Smith has studied a lot in this regard & come out with detailed report. You can download the same from the link at the bottom of this article. This is because it describes not a disease but a condition. Children with this condition are unable to take in the full effects from the calories they take in via food. Their height and weight do not grow like others.
The most diagnosis is done during their rapid growth period. As it will be most effective at that time. A child’s brain starts growing the moment he is born. It continues to grow till the end of his days. However improper diet and nutrition during these years could have serious adverse effects which remain lifelong.
The general weight gain ratio works on as the child doubles the birth weight within four months and it increase three folds by the end of the year. However children with failure to thrive often do not meet these specifications. Sometimes a healthy child’s weight gain rate may drop and the decreased growth rate can also stop vertical growth over time.
Failure to cope with the condition may cause the child to:
- Loses confidence and becomes indifferent.
- Breaks eye contact often.
- Turns short tempered.
- Does not meet the deadlines on certain aspects like talking, walking, etc at the normal time.
- Social issues: Some parents but a limit to the food intake of a child for various reasons like poverty, fear if the kid turns too fat, neglect, etc. The lowered calorie intake means less energy in the body and less food for the hormones to work on. This limits and shunts the growth forever.
- Medical conditions: Things like chronic diarrhea, chronic liver disease, cystic fibrosis, celiac disease and others may also cause failure to thrive. A damaged food pipe may not allow the child to eat anything at all. This limits the nutrients in the body and shunts growth.
- Lactose intolerance: This condition disallows the child to consume and digest the entire food group involving milk and its byproducts. If this condition is not recognized and treated in time, the body will lack in essential nutrients and amino acids which are natural growth hormone releasers.
There are many more reasons involved like infections, chronic illnesses, metabolic disorders,etc.
New born children often gain weight for a period of time and sometimes the growth stops and some children even lose weight. The doctors come in and examine the child according to a table they have which states the normal weight, circle length of a baby during the months of the first year. However if the child does not gain any weight for the first three months, he/she is normally suffering from a case of failure to thrive.
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