How to Determine If You’re Still Growing in Height?

The human height typically develops over a span of about 18 to 20 years. Therefore, you can only successfully apply height improvement methods when your body is still in this growth period. So, how can you determine if you are still growing in height? Let’s go through the growth stages and ways to identify when your height stops in the following article.

Stages of Height Development

There are three critical growth phases for increasing height: Fetal – First 3 years – Adolescence. Your body continuously develops in the womb, and the rate and results of growth after birth depend on the mother’s nutritional intake. From birth, a child goes through the following developmental stages:

How to assess your current height growth potential?

How to assess your current height growth potential?

First 3 Years

During the infancy period, a child experiences the most rapid and robust growth of their life. Typically, a child’s body length doubles in the first year, adding about 10 inches (25cm) or so. From the age of one to the end of the second year, children can grow an additional 4.3 to 5.1 inches (11 – 13cm). This growth rate slows down as they enter the third year, with an average of 2.4 inches (6,2cm) per year.

Following the fetal stage, the first three years are considered the ‘golden’ time for parents to focus on their child’s optimal height development. During this period, parents need to monitor their child’s growth progress to minimize any hindering factors. Additionally, investing in proper nutrition during these three years is crucial to ensure strong bone development, a solid foundation for optimal height growth during adolescence.

Adolescence

After years of stability, height experiences a significant and rapid growth phase during adolescence. This is also the final ‘golden’ period for height development. During the span of 1 to 2 years of adolescence, individuals can grow up to 3 to 4.7 inches (8 – 12cm) per year. The hallmark of growth during adolescence includes remarkable muscle and skeletal changes.

However, it’s also a time when challenges arise that you need to overcome for comprehensive growth. Maintaining a well-balanced, nutritious diet, regular physical activity, and proper rest become essential factors for successful growth during this phase.

How to determine if you're still growing in height based on puberty age.

How to determine if you’re still growing in height based on puberty age.

Some ways to determine if you’re still growing in height

To assess whether you’re still growing in height, you can rely on the following methods:

Based on Age

Height typically continues to increase from birth until you reach the end of adolescence. Normally, girls start their growth spurt around 10-11 years and finish by 15-16 years of age. In contrast, boys start a bit later, around 11-12 years, and finish around 17-18 years of age. After the completion of adolescence, you have approximately 2-3 more years to grow further, although the growth rate during this time is significantly slower.

From the age of 20 onwards, height growth almost entirely stops, with some rare cases of growth continuing until the age of 22, albeit at a minimal rate. This usually occurs in individuals who experienced delayed puberty. By considering age, which has been extensively studied for growth potential, you can assess your physical status to determine whether to pursue height enhancement methods.

Based on Medical Confirmation

Another way to confirm your potential for height growth is through X-rays. This method checks if your growth plates (epiphyseal plates) are still open and active. X-rays capture bone age and assess bone activity. Based on X-ray images, if the growth plates are still open/active, there is potential for further height increase. Conversely, if the growth plates have closed/stopped functioning, indicating bone maturation, it means the height growth process has concluded.

X-rays can be taken at various locations, such as the hand, wrist, or ankle, to assess growth plate activity. Depending on the location of the X-ray, a specialist will determine bone age and the natural potential for bone elongation through proper healthcare methods.

Assess the activity of growth plates through X-ray imaging.

Assess the activity of growth plates through X-ray imaging.

Promoting height growth during the potential growth years

If you are still in the height development phase, consider applying the following methods to boost your growth rate:

Follow a Nutrient-Rich Diet

A well-balanced diet provides essential nutrients necessary for bone development. To support optimal height growth, plan your meals with nutrients like calcium, collagen type 2, vitamin D, vitamin K, and minerals (phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc).

Foods beneficial for bone health include fish, seafood, spinach, broccoli, kale, eggs, chicken, yogurt, avocado, and cheese. Establish healthy eating habits, ensuring three main meals and two snacks each day to continuously supply essential nutrients.

Regular Exercise

Daily physical activity and sports not only promote overall health but also stimulate bone development. Through physical exercises, your body releases more growth hormones. Moreover, bones experience constant stretching, muscles become firmer, and joint health is maintained. Depending on your fitness level and preferences, you can choose suitable activities like jumping rope, yoga, running, swimming, badminton, basketball, or volleyball.

Remember to enhance workout efficiency by:

  • Consistently exercising for 30-45 minutes daily.
  • Warming up before exercise and stretching after.
  • Staying well-hydrated during and after workouts.
  • Avoiding exercise when fatigued, stressed, or injured.

Having a light meal 30-45 minutes before exercising to ensure effective energy.

Adequate Sleep

Most bone growth occurs while lying down, free from the weight-bearing pressure, especially during deep sleep. When in deep sleep, the pituitary gland releases the highest amount of growth hormone during the day. Therefore, to facilitate favorable height increase, prioritize quality sleep by getting 8-10 hours per night, going to bed early, and minimizing sleep-disrupting factors.

Getting enough and timely sleep to create conditions for comprehensive bone development.

Getting enough and timely sleep to create conditions for comprehensive bone development.

Limit the Use of Harmful Substances

Processed foods, fast food, carbonated beverages, cigarettes, alcohol, and beer contain harmful substances that can inhibit bone cell activity. Some stimulants can even impede bone growth potential. An excessively sweet or salty diet can negatively impact overall health, affect bones, and contribute to various health issues.

Spend Time in the Sun

Calcium is a crucial component of bone structure, and it must be adequately supplemented for height growth. However, calcium supplementation is less effective without sufficient vitamin D because vitamin D enhances calcium absorption. In addition to dietary sources, you can boost your vitamin D levels through sunlight exposure.

Sun exposure facilitates the synthesis of significant amounts of vitamin D, especially vitamin D3, through the ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Spending 10-15 minutes in the sun each day can help you meet a significant portion of the recommended daily vitamin D intake.

Read more: How Does Bone Density Affect Height?

Conclusion

Confirming your current height development potential allows you to plan appropriate healthcare to maximize your height. By monitoring your growth progress and implementing improvement methods early on, you will have the opportunity to achieve the height you desire in the future.

We hope the information shared here has helped you better understand how to determine if you’re still growing in height and the strategies to effectively promote height growth, especially for children.

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