Preschoolers

According to Webster’s dictionary a child who is old enough to talk and walk but who is too young to go to school: a child who goes to a preschool is considered as ‘Preschooler’. Preschool is the period when the child comes from his home environment and explores the outside world while attending Day Care Centers, Nursery schools or Anganwadi. It may also be called early childhood age, pregang age, the age of exploration, problem age, and a less appealing age. Childhood begins when the relative dependency of babyhood is over, at the age of two years, and extends to the time when the child becomes sexually mature at thirteen years for girls and fourteen for boys. Childhood period is now divided into - early and late childhood. Early childhood extends from two to six years and late childhood from six to the time when the child becomes sexually mature.

Growth & Development

Growth and Development are two important aspects of lifespan. Growth refers to the progressive increase in the size, length and weight of a child while Development refers to the acquisition of progressive skills like speaking, walking, and a series of orderly progression towards maturity. Growth is quantitative aspects of an organism whereas Development implies overall qualitative changes resulting in the improved functioning of the organism.

Common Health Problem & Challenges

Preschoolers are at a developing state in the context of growth and development. They are still in the phase of acquiring immunity, personal skills and traits. Due to this developing phase preschool children have to face many health issues and other challenges. Parents must be aware of these problems so that they can help their children to cope up with these challenges.

Malnutrition

Malnutrition refers to deficiencies, excesses or imbalances in a person’s intake of energy and/or nutrients. The term malnutrition covers 2 broad groups of conditions. One is ‘Undernutrition’—which includes stunting (low height for age), wasting (low weight for height), underweight (low weight for age) and micronutrient deficiencies or insufficiencies (a lack of important vitamins and minerals). The other is Overweight, Obesity and Diet-related noncommunicable diseases.

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