From birth to late adolescence, your baby will experience episodes of rapid growth. These periods correspond to important stages in his physical, psychological and cognitive development. What is peak growth? What are the signs of a growth spurt in a baby? How can I calm my baby down during a growth spurt? Until what age do growth spikes occur? We answer all your questions!
What is the growth peak?
Growth spikes are sudden stages of growth in your baby’s development. These phases coincide with specific events such as teething or learning to walk. But also, you will notice a change in your child’s behavior when he/she experiences an unusual event such as a move, school vacations, or during the phase of acquiring independence.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that these growth spikes are completely natural and usually last between 24 and 72 hours. During these days, you’ll notice changes in your child’s behavior and mood, but most importantly, an increase in his or her nutritional needs.
What are the signs of a growth spurt in a baby?
Although every child reacts differently, the signs of a growth spurt are pretty much the same.
The most obvious sign of a growth spurt is an increased appetite! Whatever his age, you will notice that, from one day to the next, your child is asking for double or even triple his usual ration! This is due to the body’s need for energy to make all the cells that are essential for your child’s development.
Other signs of growth spurts include your baby being a little irritable. Sleep may also be slightly disrupted, or your child may need to rest longer. Children who have a natural tendency to be very demanding are even more in need of affection and cuddling during their growth spurt. These children also need more quiet, talk less, or are more dreamy!
How do you calm baby down during a growth spurt?
Before your baby learns to talk, crying is his or her primary mode of expression. During growth spurts, your baby will want more feedings or bottles. The only way to calm him is to satisfy this natural need. If you notice that he’s a little irritated, simply hold him and rock him tenderly. Your presence and attention will gently calm him.
If your child is already old enough to express his needs, he will simply ask you to increase his food intake at the table! Or he will demand more snacks! In this case, there is absolutely no reason to refuse this request. Similarly, when you see that your child has excess energy, one way to calm him down is to allow him to expend that energy. You can do this by taking your child for a walk, a bike ride, or a workout. Being out of the house also helps to calm him down and channel his boundless energy.
Until what age do growth spikes occur?
Growth spikes occur fairly regularly, as they correspond to specific stages in your child’s development. However, they are not particularly linear. As a rule, growth spikes start at 3 weeks of age and continue until the end of adolescence. Yes, because your child is growing!
The important thing to remember is that growth spikes are important milestones in your baby’s development. This episode often results in an increased need for nutritional intake by the body, which requires much more energy to grow. In order to help your baby through these growth spikes as calmly as possible, observing him is the best solution. And, of course, meeting his dietary needs in order to allow his little body to grow in optimal conditions!