• Question: What causes the development stage of children aged 4-5? This is the age majority of children have a sudden growth spert but why?

    Asked by amckeswick on 24 Mar 2020.
    • Photo: Robyn Kiy

      Robyn Kiy answered on 24 Mar 2020:


      This isn’t an area of biology I know a lot about, so to be honest I’m not sure – hopefully another scientist will be of more help! I know growth spurts are common as children approach puberty, due to changes in the body’s hormone levels.

    • Photo: Ioana Grigoras

      Ioana Grigoras answered on 25 Mar 2020:


      Hi! I’m not a paediatrician, so other people here, like Sarah Clarke who is a children’s doctor, will definitely know more than I do about this!

      As far as I know, infants and toddlers grow the fastest until they are about 2 years old. After that, the rate at which they grow gradually decreases until puberty (age 14-16), when a growth spurt occurs. I am not aware of a sudden growth spurt to occur at age 4-5, but that information might have just slipped past me.

      Growing is mainly controlled by the secretion of the growth hormone. This growth hormone is released from a small gland in your brain, called the pituitary gland, into the blood. It stimulates the growth of your bones (they get longer, so you get taller), as well as proteins being created (so you can build up muscle) and it also makes the organs in the body get bigger. I though it was really cool when I found out that about half of this hormone’s secretion happens during sleep!

      I hope this answers your question!

    • Photo: Mahrukh Shameem

      Mahrukh Shameem answered on 25 Mar 2020:


      Great question! I’ll also wait for more replies!

    • Photo: Sophie Arthur

      Sophie Arthur answered on 25 Mar 2020:


      Great question! Unfortunately I am not much help on this one either. I would agree that it is most likely due to hormone levels and the events that their changing levels trigger in the body – which could include telling the bones to grow a little bit longer. But I really don’t know. Sorry.

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