Table of contents:
- The Importance of Baby Head Circumference
- Normal Baby Head Circumference
- Things That Affect Baby Growth
The baby's growth parameters are not only the height and weight, but also the baby's head circumference. Checking the baby's head circumference is important because an abnormal baby's head circumference can be a sign of a he alth problem
The baby's weight and height can describe the baby's he alth and growth. However, apart from these two things, head circumference also has the same role. Therefore, checking the baby's head circumference also needs to be done regularly when your little one undergoes a he alth check and evaluates their growth and development.
The Importance of Baby Head Circumference
Some he alth experts and pediatricians recommend checking head circumference regularly until the child is 2 years old. Head circumference measurement is an important part of routine he alth checks for babies.
When doing a head circumference examination, the doctor will also usually measure the baby's weight and height, and assess the baby's development based on his age.
An abnormal growth of head size can be a sign of a baby suffering from a disease. For example, a baby's larger head size could indicate hydrocephalus, while a smaller baby's head size could indicate microcephaly.
Normal Baby Head Circumference
The average head circumference of a full-term newborn is about 35 cm. The increase in the size of a normal baby's head circumference varies, depending on the sex and age of the baby. The following is a normal baby girl head circumference size:
- Age 0–3 months: 34–39.5 cm. If in the third month the baby's head circumference is smaller than 38 cm or larger than 41 cm, it could be a sign of a he alth problem.
- Age 3–6 months: 39, 5–42 cm. A 6 month old baby's head circumference can be said to be abnormal if it is less than 41 cm or more than 43.5 cm.
- Age 6–12 months: 42–45 cm. A baby's head circumference is considered abnormal if a 12 month old baby has a head circumference below 44.5 cm or more than 46 cm.
Meanwhile, the normal head circumference for baby boys is:
- Age 0– 3months: 34, 5–40, 5 cm. The baby's head circumference is considered abnormal if the baby is 3 months old, the size of the head circumference is less than 39.5 cm or more than 42 cm.
- Age 3– 6 months: 40, 5–43 cm. If at the 6th month the head circumference is still less than 42 cm or more than 45 cm, then the baby may be suffering from he alth problems.
- Age 6–12 years: 43–46 cm. Abnormal head circumference when a baby is 12 months old is less than 45 cm or more than 49.5 cm.
Measuring a baby's head circumference is not always the same way. If your baby is born prematurely, there is a special calculation method to measure and determine a normal baby's head circumference.
Therefore, to find out whether your baby's head circumference is normal or not, take your little one to the pediatrician. In addition to getting accurate results, doctors can also immediately take care if your baby is detected having he alth problems.
Things That Affect Baby Growth
Every baby goes through different stages of growth and development. In order to support the growth and development so that it can run well, there are several things that can be done, namely:
1. Nutritional intake
The type and amount of food consumed by the baby will affect its growth. During the period of growth and development, make sure he gets enough calories and nutrients. If he is still under 6 months old, give your little one breast milk regularly.
After the baby is over 6 months old and can be given complementary foods, breastfeeding can be continued while supplemented with he althy food intake for the baby, such as yogurt, cereals, fruit, vegetables, fish, eggs, and nuts.
2. He alth conditions during pregnancy
Your he alth during pregnancy certainly affects the condition of the fetus in the womb. Therefore, during pregnancy, you are highly recommended to eat good food for pregnant women, exercise regularly, and stay away from unhe althy lifestyles, such as smoking and drinking alcoholic beverages.
Baby growth is also influenced by genetic factors passed down by parents. If both parents are tall and fat, it is likely that the baby will have the same posture as the parents.
Similarly, if both parents are thin, the baby may also have a thinner body shape.
4. Mother's He alth after the baby is born
Your condition can also affect how the baby grows. If you suffer from postpartum depression, it may be more difficult for you to care for your little one. This can result in the baby experiencing slower growth than it should.
5. Certain he alth conditions in babies
Some medical conditions that affect the baby, such as infection or malnutrition, can also hinder the baby's growth and development. However, the baby's growth and development will usually return to normal as the baby recovers and recovers from his illness.
Even though your baby's head circumference is normal, it doesn't mean that his growth and development is completely normal as well. You need to remember, the size of the head circumference is only one of several things that can reflect the state of his he alth.
Therefore, take your little one to the pediatrician regularly for a he alth check. In addition to monitoring their growth and development, the doctor will also suggest efforts that can be made to maintain the he alth of your baby.