The Toddler and Family

The Toddler and Family

  • Proportional changes
    • Toddler years: 12-36 months 
    • Physical growth slows during toddlerhood 
    • Average weight gain is 1.8 to 2.7 kg (4-6 lbs) per year 
    • Birth weight is quadrupled by 2-1/2 years of age 
    • Average height of a 2-year-old is 34 inches 
    • Head circumference is usually equal to chest circumference by 1-2 years of age 
    • Toddlers retain a squat and “pot-bellied” appearance because of their less developed abdominal musculature and short legs 
    • Legs remain slightly bowed or curved because of their relatively large trunk
  • Biologic Development
    • Sensory Changes
      • Visual acuity of 20/40 is acceptable
      • Hearing, smell, taste, and touch continue developing
      • All senses are used to explore environment
  • Maturation of systems
    • Internal structures of the ear and throat continue to be short and straight, lymphoid tissue of the tonsils and adenoids continue to be large- otitis media, tonsillitis, and upper respiratory tract infections are common. 
    • RR and HR slow down, BP increases 
    • Respirations continue to be abdominal 
    • Toddler can better maintain body temperature 
    • Maturing of Renal system serves to conserve fluid under times of stress, decreasing the risk of dehydration
    • Voluntary control of elimination is developed 
    • Defense mechanisms of skin and blood are more efficient in toddlers than in infants 
    • Colds increase because of their increase in exposure to new pathogens (daycare) 
    • Rapid growth in neurobehavioral organization contributes to greater regularity of sleep-wake cycles