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Potbellies and toddlers

Alternative Names

Children and potbellies



Is there any reason to worry about a child's potbelly?


It is generally normal for toddlers to have potbellies. By the time children reach school age, the potbelly will most often disappear and their bodies seem more proportionate.

The belly should feel soft and NOT tender. There is nothing to worry about unless a potbelly the child also has other symptoms such as:


Rudolph JA. Nutrition and gastroenterology. In: Zitelli BJ, ed. Atlas of Pediatric Physical Diagnosis. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012:chap 10.

Review Date: 2/5/2015
Reviewed By: Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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