The cranium of a child's head differs from an adult in shape, solely as a means of protection. The head is of an elongated and oval form, its greatest length being in the direction from forehead to the back of the head; its widest portion lies just above the ears. The forehead is full, and protrudes to a marked degree, receding and flattening at the eyebrows. The bones of the face, as well as the jaw bones, are small. The neck is thin and short as compared with the size of the head. The lumps at the widest part of the head are lower than in the adult as a protection for the temporal region and the ears. The peculiar projection at the back (occiput) is for the same reason, protection, and so is the protruding forehead.
A child's skull is thin and elastic; it will bear blows which would be fatal later on in life. The narrow shoulders and the almost useless arms make a necessity of a bulging forehead to protect the face from the front; the other prominent bulges protect the sides and back of the head.
From infancy to adolescence great changes take place in the upper as well as the lower portion of the face. Above, the face lengthens; the nose and cheek bones become more prominent. The^ teeth add width and depth at the lower part of the face. Jaw bones become more angular and pointed, the masseter muscles are more in evidence, and a squareness of the chin is noticeable.
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