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How to Handle Baby Bones?

Baby's bones keep getting bigger and stronger until they reach to their "Peak Bone Mass". Poor nutrition can reduce muscles & lower the bone strength.

Dr. Himalayani Sharma Post Partum Psychosis 06 Jan 2018
How to Handle Baby Bones?
4 Years Ago 396 Reads 5 min read

Bones play a very important role in life. They protect our vital organs, support the body structurally, and also allow us to move. 

In addition, they provide an environment for the bone marrow, where blood cells form, and they serve as a storage area for minerals, especially calcium.

What do bones do?

bones

Bones play a very important role in many vital functions in your body:

1. Support

The bone provides a rigid structure as well as support for other parts of your body.

For example, the big bones of the feet support your upper body when you stand. We have no defined shape without our bones.

2. Movement

Bones also play an important role in the movement of your body because your muscles connect your bones through the tendons. When your muscles shrink, your bones act as a lever.

The interaction of bones and muscles contributes to a wide range of movements capable of forming your body.

3. Protection

Your bones also protect many of your internal organs. How your rib cage surrounds your heart and lungs, how the bones of your skull surround your brain are good examples of this.

4. Blood cell generation and maintenance

Many blood cells such as red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets are formed within your bones. It occurs in red marrow that is a part of bone marrow and this process is called hematopoiesis.

5. Storage

Important minerals like calcium and phosphorus are stored within your bones. When your body needs these resources more, they can be released back into your bloodstream for use. 

Apart from red marrow, there is another type of marrow in bones which is called yellow marrow. This is where some adipose tissue accumulates. If necessary, fat in this tissue can be broken down and used for energy.

Types of bone

  • Long bones
  • Short bones
  • Flat bones
  • Irregular bones
  • Sesamoid bones

What Are Bones Made Of?

What Are Bones Made Of

Every bone in our body is made of the same material and these bones make the skeleton that changes all the time like other parts of your body. The periosteum is the outer surface of the bone that is a thin, dense membrane that contains blood vessels and nerves that nourish the bone. The next layer is smooth and very stiff that is made of compact bone and when you look at the skeleton it is visible to you.

There are many layers of cancellous bone looking like sponges within the compact bone. Although the cancellous bone is not as rigid as the compact bone yet it is very strong. The cancellous bone protects the bone marrow that is the innermost part of the bone. Its main function is to make blood cells and it is like a thick jelly. Children's bones grow throughout childhood. Their bones continue to grow and strengthen between 18 and 25 years of age until they are known as "peak bone mass".

Building strong bones during childhood will provide protection from a delicate bone disease such as osteoporosis later in life. So you should encourage your child to eat the food full of the following:

1. Calcium

Calcium is particularly important during puberty when bones grow faster than at any other time. This time is usually between 12 to 16 for boys and 11 and 15 years of age for girls. Foods such as cheese, yogurt, milk, green and leafy vegetables(not spinach), nuts, peas, dried figs contain calcium and there is some food fortified with calcium, including some soy and almond milk.

2. Vitamin D

Vitamin D is important for bones because it helps our body to absorb calcium. It is formed in our skin when it is exposed to sunlight during the summer months (late March / April to the last of September). It is important to never let your child's skin turn red or burn in the sunlight. You should not take babies under six months of age to the direct sunlight. Vitamin D helps the body to absorb calcium but most children do not eat many foods containing vitamin D. 

Because vitamin D is very important, health professionals recommend that all children take vitamin D supplements if sufficient amounts of this mineral are not found in the diet. 

Encourage your child to exercise

Activities such as walking, running, jumping, and climbing is great for strong bones and it pressurizes our muscles that help to make the bones strong. Activities such as cycling or swimming don't pressurize our muscles but help to maintain overall body health.

Finally, I can say that bones are very important for the overall health of the human body. So we should take care of these from the beginning. You should give your child food full of calcium, Vitamin D, and also encourage them to do exercise. When children recover from fractures, they are also prescribed by health professionals.

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    Dr. Himalayani Sharma

    Counselor

    Delhi, India

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    Language: English, Hindi

    Expertise: Mood Disorders, Breast Feeding

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