This calculator will enable you to predict the height your child will be. The tool uses proven techniques for estimating height, using empirically tested indicators and methods. Although there are a number of fixed and variable determinants, it is important to remember that any formulae provide estimates at best. There is no tool proven to predict height in adulthood with 100% accuracy. There are several factors that may influence height reached in adulthood, which makes prediction relatively difficult. However, there are several formulae available that can serve as fair estimates of future height. Apart from lifestyle and nutritional factors, height is also influenced by gender. Genetics, however, is the key determinant of height in adulthood. This is the single most important factor in estimating a child’s height. This should be treated with some caution though, as the actual parental height may also differ from their own genetically predisposed height. Because of this, there is room for much inter-generational variability from the genetically probable height. For this reason, a more accurate estimate can be calculated using information about the child. This information is relevant once the child is over 4 years old.
It is generally believed that children will be taller than their parents. However, this generalization is by no means necessarily accurate. There are a number of direct, and more variable determinants of height. As genetics is the leading predictor, it is useful to think of the other factors in terms of how they explain a difference between a predicted potential height and actual adult height. i. Genetics The primary determinant of height is genetics. This is why a simple formula using parental heights proves to be a fair basic estimate of the expected height of a child in adulthood. ii. Nutrition Nurture plays an important role in ensuring growth. In fact, apart from genetic factors, nutrition plays the most significant role in child growth. Growth can be affected by poor or inadequate nutrition. Similarly, good nutrition can ensure healthy height to weight ratios as children grow. iii. Hormone levels The levels of specific hormones are also known to impact expected heighty. Growth hormones and thyroid hormones have a particular impact. iv. Chronic illness, or chronic medications Chronic illness can affect growth, and in some cases lead to cases of stunting, which would prevent a child from reaching their genetically predicted height. Chronic illnesses include coeliac disease, certain allergies, intolerances, or conditions such as HIV-AIDS. Similarly, taking chronic medication can affect growth. One example is corticosteroids. v. Other empirical indicators Empirical studies have revealed associated determinants of height including household income, climate conditions, and lifestyle. Apart from genetic factors which explain 60 – 80% of the variation in individual heights, around 20 – 40% is explained by nutrition. Thus, nutrition is a vital factor in the realization of optimal height through healthy growth.
Predictive tools vary in terms of their complexity, from basic means formulae to advanced statistical calculations. Determinants of height used also differ for each. This calculator provides two options for estimating a child’s height in adulthood.
Predictions of height in adulthood are stronger for children over four years old, where the data around their growth trajectory is known. In this case, we use the Khamis-Roche Formula. This method uses the child’s age, gender, height, and weight, as well as the height of the mother and of the father. The calculations also make use of existing calculated growth charts which track childhood development. This method as developed in 1994 at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. The approach does not use skeletal age, which involves a hand x-ray, and is therefore less risky and invasive. The results include a 2.1-inch margin of error for boys, and a 1.7-inch margin of error for girls, and is based on a sample of Caucasian children. For this reason, it may have limited applicability for children of other ethnicities. Once again, these estimates are best used under circumstances where children receive good nutrition and are able to develop within the perimeters of average rates of growth for children.
A less sophisticated predictive tool uses only the heights of the parents as variables in predicting child height. This simple formula is the Mid-Parental Height Formula. The formula takes an average of the two values of parental height. Then, to calculate the expected height of a girl child, subtract 2,5 inches (or 6,5 cm). And you calculate the expected height of a boy child by adding the same value. Thus, mid-parental height is calculated as follows:
Growth charts represent a series of percentile curves which depict the healthy expected rates of mass for heights, or other specific body measurements. These are used to track healthy infancy, as well as childhood growth in order to screen for potential risk factors, such as limited growth, or excessive growth, or obesity. Two leading growth charts include the World Health Organization’s WHO Growth Standards chart and the CDC growth charts. The former is used mainly to track the growth of infants, and the latter is used for children ages two and over. Although the results derived from these charts form part of the measurement, these are not used solely to make diagnoses and the information would be incorporated with other variables to identify potential warning signs. If you have any concerns about the rate of growth of your child, it is best to seek medical advice.