Parenthood gives birth to questions and concerns — especially as children enter the path to adulthood. And one of the biggest question marks for parents is about their children’s physical growth. If you’re the parent or guardian of a daughter, for example, you may wonder: when do girls stop growing?
Well, it depends. Here’s what you need to know:
In this article: 📝
- What age do girls stop growing?
- Average height for teen girls
- When do breasts stop growing?
- At the height of health
What age do girls stop growing?
Most girls will have reached their adult height at age 14 or 15. But, it’s not as simple as that.
There are two milestones that determine when a girl will stop growing: the start of puberty and her first period. It’s useful to understand how these two “moments” are connected with growth.
Typical puberty starts sometime between the ages of eight and 14. During puberty, children’s bodies start shaping into their adult version, and there will be some (often impressive) growth spurts. Around the age of 11 is when most girls are expected to grow the fastest, but that varies.
Along with height and other developments, girls’ feet will also see rapid growth during puberty, stopping around the age of 14 or so – it’s possible, though, to change foot sizes well into adulthood.
Does a girl stop growing after her period?
The first period usually comes around two or so years after the start of puberty (a bit earlier or a bit later are normal, too). Height growth doesn’t stop completely then, but it will begin to slow down.
Usually, for the next two years after their first menstruation, many girls will grow one or two inches – but studies have suggested that girls who have their period at around 10 years will grow an average of four more inches before they reach their adult height.
The truth is, there are some general patterns that girl growth spurts follow, but everyone is different. Genetics, nutrition, medications, chronic illnesses, and other medical conditions all matter. You can ask your child’s doctor if there are factors that can stunt her growth.
Can a girl grow taller after 20?
As a general rule, no. Girls (and boys) are usually done with height growth when they enter adulthood. That’s because growth plates (areas of cartilage at the end of long bones) close at around the end of puberty.
A girl can appear taller, though, by improving posture and stretching. Nutrition that helps make bones healthier (e.g. vitamin D and calcium) is also important for both children and adults.
Average height for teen girls
Apart from the question “when do girls stop growing” we talked about, you may also wonder how tall can a girl become exactly?
There’s no way to predict exact height, but you could get an estimate based on the height of parents. This method is known as the midparental height calculation.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that the average height of women in the U.S. is 5’3.5’’ (63.5 inches). Based on their chart, a girl of 12 years will be around 59 inches, and around 62 inches at 13 (based on the 50th percentile). Global averages for humans tend to increase with time, though.
When do breasts stop growing?
Breasts grow in stages, from infancy to adulthood. The so-called “breast buds” start developing around two to two-and-a-half years before the first period – and they’re one of the earliest signs of puberty.
This part of a girl’s body continues to develop for years. For many girls, breasts will reach “adult” size at around 15 years. In adulthood, size and shape can change or mature based on factors like weight, fitness level, pregnancy, aging, and more.
Of course, if there are problems with breast development, girls may need medical attention and/or psychological support.
At the height of health
Questions like “when do girls stop growing in height” are very natural to wonder about. But, no matter what height a child ends up with, it’s important to build up their confidence and prevent their height, weight, or general physical growth from being tied to their self-worth.
If you’re concerned about your child’s body image, it may be good to speak with a therapist for advice.
Also, if there are signs of early puberty (e.g. before the age of eight) or delayed puberty (e.g. no period or breast development at 15-16 years), it’s best for a girl to consult her pediatrician. They may do some tests, take medical history, and sometimes refer her to an OB/GYN or endocrinologist.
And of course, if your daughter is still growing, pay close attention to nutrition. Ensure she gets the right amount of vitamins, calcium, protein, and other nutrients, and cut back on saturated fats, sugar, and other unhealthy food. A balanced diet (as well as being physically active) is a way to help girls reach their full growth potential.
Read also: When Do Boys Stop Growing?