Key Points for Children & Teens
It is never too early to take actions for strong bones.The best time to build bone is during youth and young adulthood.
Bone builds fastest in the years from age 9 to 18 with peak bone mass (the densest bone one will ever have) usually reached between 16 and 25 years of age.
To promote strong bones, it is important to eat the bone healthy way. Eat a nutrient rich diet including a calcium rich food and lean protein at each meal or snack, get the recommended amount of vitamin D, and fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables.
Children and teens need to get the recommended amount of calcium and vitamin D each day.
All breastfed babies, bottle-fed babies drinking less than 1 quart of formula and most children aged 1 to 19 need to take vitamin D as a supplement.
During youth and young adulthood, at least 60 minutes a day of physical activity is recommended to build strong bones.
Lifestyle choices to promote strong bones in the teenage years include exercising regularly, not smoking, and avoiding underage drinking.
Disordered eating during youth and young adulthood, especially anorexia nervosa, can interfere with reaching peak bone mass.
When female teens have regular menstrual periods, it is a sign of hormonal balance Hormonal balance is necessary to build stronger bones and reach peak bone mass, If your teen has Irregular or lack of menstrual cycles, It is important to speak to her healthcare provider about how to promote regular menstrual cycles.
In order to protect the bones of all children and teens, it is crucial that they wear seat belts in any moving vehicle and use appropriate protective equipment when participating in sports.