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Diseases & Conditions : Growth and Development


    • Adolescent (13 to 18 Years)

      Detailed information on adolescence, ages 13 to 18 years

    • Age-Appropriate Speech and Hearing Milestones

      A hearing problem may be suspected in a child who is not responding to sounds or who is not developing language skills appropriately.

    • Age-Appropriate Speech and Language Milestones

      Here are guidelines on speech and language development that may help you decide if your child is experiencing hearing problems.

    • Age-Appropriate Vision Milestones

      An infant's eyes are sometimes uncoordinated and may look cross-eyed. Within 2 months, the child can follow faces and objects and look at his or her hands.

    • Amenorrhea in Teens

      Amenorrhea is a menstrual condition in which a woman's menstrual periods are absent for more than three monthly cycles. Pregnancy is one possible cause of amenorrhea.

    • Anatomy and Development of the Mouth and Teeth

      Children's teeth begin developing in the fetus. Good nutrition from the mother during pregnancy is important in the development of the teeth.

    • Anatomy of the Breasts

      Each breast has 15 to 20 sections (lobes), which are arranged like the petals of a daisy. Each lobe has many smaller lobules, which end in dozens of tiny bulbs that can produce milk.

    • Anatomy of the Female Pelvic Area

      Detailed anatomical description of the female pelvis, including simple definitions and labeled, full-color illustrations

    • Anorexia Nervosa in Children

      Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder that is a form of self-starvation. A child or teen with anorexia has abnormally low body weight, a distorted body image, and an intense fear of gaining weight.

    • Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Children

      ADHD is a behavior disorder marked by inattention, impulsivity, and, in some cases, hyperactivity.

    • Autism Spectrum Disorder

      Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a problem that affects a child’s nervous system and growth and development. It usually shows up during a child’s first 3 years of life.

    • Bipolar Disorder in Adolescents

      Manic depression, also known as bipolar disorder, is a type of affective disorder that goes beyond the day's ordinary ups and downs. It is becoming an important health concern in this country.

    • Biting

      Young children may bite others out of frustration or stress, or because they feel powerless. Infants and toddlers often bite as a way of exploring their world.

    • Breast Conditions in Young Women

      Some breast changes or conditions are related to a young woman's menstrual cycle, but others may occur at any time. Most breast conditions are benign.

    • Breast Health and Adolescents

      Detailed information on breast health for children

    • Breast Self-Examination

      Become familiar with how your breasts usually look and feel so that you may notice any change from what is normal for you.

    • Brushing and Toothpaste for Children

      You should begin brushing your child's teeth around 24 months of age, or as directed by your child's doctor. Children will need help brushing their teeth until they are 7 to 8 years old.

    • Bulimia Nervosa in Adolescents

      Bulimia nervosa is defined as uncontrolled episodes of overeating (bingeing) usually followed by self-induced vomiting, misuse of laxatives, enemas, or medications in an attempt to control weight.

    • Care of the Uncircumcised Penis in Teens

      In an uncircumcised boy, the foreskin will begin to separate from the glans, or the tip of the penis. This happens naturally while the male is an infant. This is called foreskin retraction.

    • Childhood Immunization Index

      Detailed information on immunizations for adults and children, including a current immunization schedule

    • Childhood Immunizations

      Your little one will need several immunization shots to help protect her from several childhood diseases, some of which can be deadly. Knowing which shots she needs, when, and what to do in the event of a minor reaction is important.

    • Common Dental Problems and Concerns

      Detailed information on common dental problems and concerns in children

    • Cradle Cap

      Cradle cap (infant seborrheic dermatitis) is scaly patches on a baby's scalp. Cradle cap isn’t serious, but it can cause thick crusting and white or yellow scales. Some babies can also have seborrheic dermatitis in the diaper area, and on the face, neck, and trunk. Cradle cap usually clears up within the first year.

    • Dental Health and Children

      Detailed information on dental health in children

    • Dental Health Overview

      Generally, dental examinations and cleanings are recommended every six months for children. Encourage good oral hygiene at home by helping your child brush his or her own teeth.

    • Dental Procedures for Children

      Detailed information on the most common dental procedures, including braces, bleaching, bridges, dentures, dental implants, fillings, root canal, sealants, and wisdom teeth extraction

    • Diapers and Diaper Rash

      You have 2choices in diapers—cloth or disposable. Each type has advantages and disadvantages. You must decide which works best for your child and family.

    • Diarrhea in Children

      Diarrhea is a common problem. It may last 1 or 2 days and go away on its own. If diarrhea lasts more than 2 days, your child may have a more serious problem.

    • Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis (DTaP)

      Diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus are serious illnesses. A combination vaccine is given to babies and children to provide protection against all three diseases.

    • Discipline

      Detailed information on disciplining a child, including information on time-out, temper tantrum, lying, stealing, and television and children

    • Disciplining Your Child at Any Age

      Each child is different, but most children need to be given clear rules about behavior.

    • Dysmenorrhea in Adolescents

      Dysmenorrhea is a menstrual condition marked by severe and frequent menstrual cramps and pain. Dysmenorrhea can be either lifelong or caused by another medical condition.

    • Eating Disorders in Children

      Detailed information on adolescents and eating disorders, including anorexia, bulimia, and obesity

    • Encopresis (Holding Bowel Movements)

      Encopresis can develop from long-term constipation. Once a child becomes constipated, he or she may avoid using the bathroom because of discomfort. Stool can become impacted and unable to move forward.

    • Exercise and Children

      Exercise is an important part of keeping children healthy. Encouraging healthy lifestyles in children and teens is important for when they grow older.

    • Eye Exams and Visual Screening

      At 6 months of age, an infant should have a vision screening during a well-baby visit. In particular, the healthcare provider should check how well the eyes work together.

    • Failure to Thrive

      Failure to thrive means that a child is not growing as he or she should. Psychological, social, or economic problems within the family almost always play a role in this condition.

    • Feeding Guide for the First Year

      It's important to feed your baby a variety of healthy foods at the proper time. Solid foods should not be started before 4 months of age.

    • Female Growth and Development

      Detailed information on female physical development

    • Fever in A Newborn

      The system that controls body temperature is not well developed in a newborn. Here's what you need to know about fever and your baby.

    • Fillings

      Teeth that have tooth decay must be repaired. Advances in dental materials and techniques provide new, effective ways to restore teeth.

    • Flossing and Children

      Flossing should be started when your child is 2 to 3 years old, under the direction of your child's dentist. Children younger than 2 don't need to floss.

    • Fluoride and Children

      Fluoride helps prevent tooth decay, strengthens tooth enamel, and reduces the harmful effects of plaque.

    • Gastrointestinal Problems

      If your baby seems fussy and you’ve fed and changed him, he may have an upset stomach or colic. But don’t worry, there are lots of things you can do to make your little one more comfortable and keep both of you calm.

    • Glossary - Growth and Development

      Glossary of terms relating to growth and development of children

    • Gynecological Health

      Detailed information on gynecological health of a child

    • Gynecological Infections

      Detailed information on gynecological problems in a child

    • Haemophilus Influenzae Type b (Hib)

      Haemophilus influenzae type b is a serious bacterial disease that usually strikes children younger than 5. It is spread from person-to-person by coughing and sneezing.

    • Health Maintenance

      Detailed information on proper health maintenance for a child

    • Health Promotion and Common Problems

      Detailed information on health promotion and common health problems in children

    • Healthy Diets Overview

      Eating healthy is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and is something that should be taught to children at a young age.

    • Healthy Eating During Adolescence

      Encourage your teen to eat three balanced meals a day, with fruits or vegetables as snacks.

    • Healthy Sleep Habits

      The normal amount of sleep varies depending on the age of your child. A 2-year-old needs 10 to 12 hours a night, plus naps during the day. By age 6, a child usually has dropped naps, but still needs 10 hours at night.

    • Hearing Loss in Children

      Sensorineural hearing loss involves the inner ear or its connection with the brain. Conductive hearing loss involves the middle or outer ear.

    • Hepatitis B (HBV) in Children

      An infant or young child who contracts hepatitis B is at greater risk of staying infected with the virus and of having life-long liver problems, such as scarring of the liver and liver cancer.

    • Home Page - Growth and Development

      Detailed information on proper health maintenance for a child

    • Infant

      Detailed information on infant health

    • Infant Nutrition

      Choosing how to feed your baby is an important decision that has life-long effects for your baby and for you.

    • Infant Play

      Hang brightly colored objects near your newborn. Sing and talk to your baby. Rock your baby, and take him or her for walks.

    • Infant Sleep

      If you know anything about your baby’s sleeping pattern, it’s probably that it doesn’t coincide with yours. But learning more about your baby’s nighttime and daytime sleep needs can help you recognize what’s normal—and what’s not.

    • Kyphosis in Children

      Kyphosis is a deformity of the backbone (spine). It’s when the bones of the spine (vertebrae) in the upper back curve outward more than they should.

    • Learning Disorders

      Learning disorders are sometimes called learning disabilities. Most children with learning disorders have normal intelligence, but they have difficulty with reading, math, or another academic area.

    • Lying and Stealing

      Lying and stealing are common, but inappropriate, behaviors in school-aged children. Most of the time these behaviors will be outgrown.

    • Major Depression in Children

      Common symptoms of major depression include persistent feelings of sadness, sleep disturbances, and difficulty concentrating.

    • Male Growth and Development

      Detailed information on male growth and development

    • Mastalgia (Breast Pain)

      The most common type of breast pain is associated with the menstrual cycle and is nearly always hormonal.

    • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR)

      The MMR vaccine is given in two doses—at 12 to 15 months and at 4 to 6 years, or at least one month after the first dose.

    • Measuring a Baby's Temperature

      Most healthcare providers recommend taking a baby's temperature rectally, by placing a thermometer in the baby's anus. This method is accurate and gives a quick reading of the baby's internal temperature.

    • Menstrual Cycle: An Overview

      A woman is generally most fertile (able to become pregnant) a few days before, during, and after ovulation.

    • Mouthguards

      Mouthguards are important to help protect your child's mouth and teeth from serious injury.

    • Newborn Crying

      Crying is the way babies communicate. They cry because of hunger, discomfort, frustration, tiredness, and even loneliness.

    • Nightmares and Night Terrors

      A night terror is a partial waking from sleep with behaviors such as screaming, kicking, panic, sleep walking, thrashing, or mumbling.

    • Normal Breast Development

      Breast development occurs in distinct stages, first before birth, and again at puberty and during the childbearing years. Changes also occur to the breasts during menstruation and when a woman reaches menopause.

    • Nursing Bottle Caries

      Did you know that babies can get cavities? They can—usually when they go to bed with a bottle filled with milk or juice. Find out how to prevent this type of tooth decay, which is also called nursing bottle caries.

    • Nutrition Index

      Detailed nutrition information for mothers who are breastfeeding or bottle-feeding, and toddlers, preschool-aged children, school-aged children, and adolescents

    • Online Resources - Growth and Development

      List of online resources to find additional information on growth and development

    • Orthodontics/Braces for Children

      Orthodontics is the dental specialty that focuses on the development, prevention, and correction of irregularities of the teeth, bite, and jaws.

    • Overview of Mood Disorders in Teens

      Mood disorders in teens are one of the most underdiagnosed mental health problems. These disorders also put teens at risk for other conditions that may last long after the first episodes of depression are resolved.

    • Overview of the Male Anatomy

      The male reproductive anatomy includes the bladder, epididymis, penis, scrotum, and prostate gland.

    • Pap Test for Adolescents

      A Pap test, along with a pelvic examination, is an important part of a female's routine health care because it may detect abnormalities that can lead to invasive cancer.

    • Persistent Depressive Disorder in Children

      Detailed information on persistent depressive disorder, including symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment

    • Physical Exam: Adolescent Male

      Detailed information on what males can expect during a physical examination

    • Play

      Detailed information on the stages of play for all ages

    • Pneumococcus

      Pneumococcus bacteria can cause serious illness in children, including pneumonia, infection in the blood, and meningitis.

    • Polio (IPV)

      The poliovirus destroys the nervous system, causing paralysis. Today, polio is extremely rare in the United States because of the polio vaccine. It's still common in other countries, though, so children still need to be immunized.

    • Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)

      Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a group of emotional and physical symptoms many women have in the days before their period starts. Lifestyle changes and sometimes medicines can help manage symptoms.

    • Preschool (4 to 5 Years)

      Detailed information on preschool-aged children, ages 4 to 5 years

    • Preschool Play

      A preschooler needs space in which to run and explore. Take him or her on trips to the playground, park, or beach. Encourage him or her to play with other children.

    • Preschooler Nutrition

      Preschool children are still developing their eating habits and need encouragement to eat healthy meals and snacks.

    • Prevention of Oral Problems

      Detailed information on the prevention of oral diseases and dental problems

    • Problems with Vision

      Eye disorders in children are either refractive or nonrefractive errors. Refractive errors are those caused by the shape of the eye. Nonrefractive errors are caused by disease.

    • Puberty: Adolescent Female

      Girls experience puberty as a sequence of events, and their pubertal changes usually begin before boys of the same age. The first pubertal change in girls usually is breast development.

    • Puberty: Adolescent Male

      During puberty, a teenage boy will grow taller and heavier, and hormones will lead to sexual maturity.

    • Recognizing Urologic or Gynecologic Problems

      Vaginal bleeding and discharge are a normal part of a teen girl's menstrual cycle. If your daughter notices anything different or unusual, talk with your teen's healthcare provider.

    • Safer Sex Guidelines for Adolescents

      The only safe sex is no sex, most health care providers say. But certain precautions and safe behaviors can minimize a person's risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease.

    • School Refusal

      School phobia can be seen in young children going to school for the first time, in older children who fear a bully or mean teacher, and in children who are anxious about leaving their parents.

    • School-Age (6 to 12 Years)

      Detailed information on the school-aged child, ages 6 to 12 years

    • School-Aged Child Nutrition

      Eating healthy after-school snacks is important at this age, as these snacks may contribute up to one-third of the total calorie intake for the day.

    • Scoliosis in Children

      Scoliosis is a deformity of the backbone (spine). It’s when the spine has a side-to-side curve. The curve of the spine measures 10 degrees or more.

    • Sealants

      Dental sealants are thin, plastic films painted on the chewing surfaces of the molars and premolars. They are highly effective in preventing tooth decay.

    • Separation Anxiety

      Separation anxiety usually begins around 6 months of age. Babies may suddenly be afraid of familiar people, such as babysitters or grandparents.

    • Sexually Transmitted Diseases

      Women suffer more frequent and severe symptoms from STDs. Some STDs can cause pelvic inflammatory disease, which can lead to both infertility and ectopic pregnancy.

    • Signs of Problems in Speech, Language, and Hearing Development:

      Detailed information on speech, language, and hearing problems during development

    • Sleep

      Detailed information on healthy sleep habits of children, including information on nightmares and night terrors

    • Stages of Play

      Children go through distinct stages of play as they grow. Each stage is critically important to the development of the next.

    • Stuttering in Children

      Stuttering is a speech problem. The normal flow of speech is disrupted. A child who stutters repeats or prolongs sounds, syllables, or words. Stuttering is different from repeating words when learning to speak. Stuttering may make it difficult for a child to communicate with others.

    • Substance Abuse / Chemical Dependence in Adolescents

      Substances frequently abused by adolescents include alcohol, marijuana, and amphetamines. Some teens are at higher risk of developing substance-related disorders.

    • Teething

      A baby's first tooth usually appears between 5 and 7 months of age. Often, the two middle bottom teeth come through the gums first, followed by the middle four upper teeth.

    • Television and Children

      TV programs can be educational, but many children watch too much television. TV may also show children behavior that you do not want them to imitate.

    • Temper Tantrums

      These fits of rage—the stomping, screaming, and falling on the floor—are a normal part of childhood development. Temper tantrums often happen only with a parent. They are a way for the child to communicate his or her feelings.

    • The Growing Child

      Detailed information on the growth and development of a child

    • The Growing Child: 1 to 3 Months

      At this stage of growth, your baby will gain 1-1/2 to 2 pounds in weight and more than an inch in height each month.

    • The Growing Child: 10 to 12 Months

      Your child now says da-da and ma-ma, and possibly 2 other words, as well. He or she can also make a simple gesture, such as shaking the head.

    • The Growing Child: 1-Year-Olds

      Your child is a toddler now and very active! He or she can climb stairs while holding on and play with push and pull toys.

    • The Growing Child: 2-Year-Olds

      Speech at this age is becoming clearer. Your child has a vocabulary of 200 to 300 words and can tell his or her age and name.

    • The Growing Child: 3-Year-Olds

      Most 3-year-olds have lost the rounded tummy of a toddler. Your child can use a spoon well and can wash and dry his or her hands.

    • The Growing Child: 4 to 6 Months

      This age is very social, and babies begin moving in much more purposeful ways.

    • The Growing Child: 7 to 9 Months

      A baby of this age rolls over easily from front to back and back to front, and bounces when supported to stand.

    • The Growing Child: Adolescent (13 to 18 Years)

      Adolescence is a time for growth spurts and puberty changes. Sexual maturation may happen gradually or several signs may become visible at the same time.

    • The Growing Child: Newborn

      In the first month of life, babies usually catch up and surpass their birthweight, then steadily continue to gain weight.

    • The Growing Child: Preschool (4 to 5 Years)

      Children at this age begin to understand concepts and can compare abstract ideas.

    • The Growing Child: School-Age (6 to 12 Years)

      Although friendships become more important at this age, children are still fond of their parents and like being part of a family.

    • Thumb Sucking

      Thumb sucking is normal in infants and young children. It shouldn't cause any permanent problems if your child stops by age 5.

    • Time-Out

      Time-out is a type of discipline that is used to stop bad behavior in a child. It takes the child out of the situation and gives him or her time to calm down.

    • Toddler

      Detailed information on toddler health

    • Toddler Nutrition

      Mealtime with a toddler can be challenging, because children at this age are striving for independence and control. It's best to provide structure and set limits.

    • Toddler Play

      Ideas for toddler toys: a rocking horse, a shovel and a bucket, and toys that can be pushed or pulled.

    • Toilet Training

      Toilet training should begin when the child shows signs that he or she is ready. There is no right age to begin.

    • Tooth Decay in Children

      Tooth decay is the breakdown of tooth enamel. Enamel is the hard outer surface of a tooth. Tooth decay can lead to cavities (caries). These are holes in the teeth.

    • Topic Index - Growth and Development

      Detailed information on proper health maintenance for a child

    • Types of Visual Screening Tests for Infants and Children

      Many types of vision tests can be used to check your child's ability to see. Some of them can be used at any age, and some are used based on your child's age and understanding.

    • Urinary Incontinence (Enuresis) in Children

      In children under age 3, it’s normal to not have full bladder control. As children get older, they become more able to control their bladder. When wetting happens in a child who is old enough to control his or her bladder, it’s known as enuresis.

    • Vaginitis

      Vaginitis is a common problem for women of all ages. Bacteria, yeast, viruses, and chemicals in creams or sprays can cause it.

    • Varicella (Chickenpox)

      Chickenpox is a very common childhood disease. It is usually mild, but can be serious, especially in young infants and adults.

    • Vision

      Detailed information on children with vision problems

    • Vision Overview

      Monitoring your child's ability to see is an important part of the health of your growing child.

    • Vulvitis

      Vulvitis is inflammation of the soft folds of skin outside the vagina.

    • Wisdom Teeth Extraction in Children

      Detailed information on a wisdom teeth extraction procedure