You're in for many changes! By midway through this year, most babies are walking and learning to talk. They're turning into toddlers. By their second birthdays, most are losing that "baby" look. As toddlers get stronger and more capable, their rate of physical growth slows during this year.
During this second year of life, growth slows down. Your toddler may gain about 5 pounds (2.27 kg) and grow about 4 or 5 inches (10 to 12 cm). By 2 years, children have reached about half of their adult height and 90% of adult head size. Boys tend to weigh about a pound more than girls but average about the same height.
What you will notice more than actual growth are changes in a toddler's appearance. Body proportions are beginning to change. Instead of sporting the rounded belly and relatively short arms and legs suited to crawling on all fours, toddlers start to trim down, become more muscular because of increased activity, and will begin to look more like preschoolers than babies.
Like babies, toddlers come in all shapes and sizes. Your doctor will continue to plot your little one's growth on a growth chart during regular checkups. Although you may be concerned that your child is too thin or too chubby at any one time, the most important thing is that your child continues to grow at a steady rate.
During the second year of life, babies are learning to feed themselves. They are moving to table foods and learning about new tastes and textures. Keep in mind that appetites slow down as growth slows and there may be times when your child is not very interested in food. If you have concerns your child is not eating enough, speak with your doctor.
Encourage activity and exploration by providing a safe environment that lets your child be active every day. Besides the physical benefits, this is also how a lot of learning takes place. This should be fairly easy, as most toddlers are naturally curious and seize every opportunity to move.
Try not to let your baby spend too much time in confined spaces — such as strollers, playpens, and cribs — that restrain moving and exploring.
Toddlers grow at a slower but steady rate. From their second birthday to their third, most kids grow only about 2-3 inches. But you will see your child growing in other ways, especially in the area of language.
Continue to provide a safe and healthy environment to support your child's growth and development. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about your child's growth.
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: January 2015
|American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) The AAP is committed to the health and well-being of infants, adolescents, and young adults. The website offers news articles and tips on health for families.|
|Zero to Three Zero to Three is a national nonprofit organization that promotes the health and development of infants and toddlers.|
|Nemours BrightStart! This literacy program prepares young children to read. Take the reading readiness screener to see if your preschooler's pre-reading skills are on track. Get tips and ideas for reading aloud, and learn about games, songs, and other tools that can help your child on the path to success.|
|American Academy of Family Physicians This site, operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), provides information on family physicians and health care, a directory of family physicians, and resources on health conditions.|
|Movement, Coordination, and Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Most toddlers this age are walking and gaining even more control over their hands and fingers. Give your child lots of fun (and safe) things to do to encourage this development.|
|Communication and Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Your toddler is probably saying a few first words now, but you may not be able to understand them all. Learn about how your child is communicating.|
|Sleep and Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Frequent night-feedings may be a thing of the past, but in this second year of life your tot might be rising for other reasons. Learn more.|
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|Your Child's Checkup: 1.5 Years (18 Months) Find out what this doctor's visit will involve and what your toddler might be doing by 18 months.|
|Your Child's Checkup: 2 Years (24 Months) Find out what this doctor's visit will involve and what your child might be doing by the second year.|
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|Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Toddlers have little tummies, so serve foods that are packed with the nutrients they need to grow healthy and strong, and limit the sweets and empty calories.|
|Toddlers at the Table: Avoiding Power Struggles By anticipating problems and offering choices, you can teach your toddler healthy eating habits and avoid power struggles about food.|
|Toddlers: Learning by Playing It might look like just child's play, but toddlers are hard at work learning important physical skills as they gain muscle control, balance, and coordination.|
|Safe Exploring for Toddlers Toddlers are learning to talk, to walk and run, and to assert their independence. For many in this age group, "outside" and "play" are common requests.|
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