Health and Wellness

Baby Growth Charts: The Ultimate Guide

February 1, 2023

Author -

Melissa Iftimie

Growth charts are how we track - you guessed it - baby’s growth. Confused? Here we break down what you need to know.

At every appointment your baby has with a pediatrician your doctor will measure baby’s weight, length and head circumference. It's all part of tracking your baby's growth using a fancy chart called a growth chart. And expect this to happen consistently until your baby turns two.

How do baby growth charts work?

Babies from 0 to 2 are compared to other babies - boys to boys and girls to girls. The output of this comparison is called a growth percentile - a scale that goes from 0 to 100. 

The purpose of a percentile is to help your pediatrician see growth over time. So what we want to see is that your baby stays on her percentile path or close to it. It doesn’t matter if she is in the 12th percentile or the 87th - the doctor will want to see her follow the path of that percentile. 

For example, one baby will closely follow her 50th percentile for height and head circumference, but if her weight last visit was also 50th percentile and now it is 25, your doctor will want to investigate what's going on. Think of growth data as just one more factor your doctor will use to create a picture of your baby’s overall health. 

Don’t read too much into it

It’s common for us parents to obsess over this kind of stuff. But stop yourself - even if your baby is on the high or low end. Overtime, there is no association between percentiles as a baby and how tall or how much someone will weigh as an adult. 

Growth charts just show us that there is a wide range of "normal" when it comes to growth. The same is true for adults, right?!

Should you measure this stuff at home?

Probably not. Taking height and weight measurements is best left for a professional at your pediatrician's office. Let them do the heavy lifting to fill out the baby growth chart.

Enjoy your baby’s growth!

Bottom line? While the medical standard is to compare your baby to others through a baby growth chart, don’t overthink it. Watch your baby grow and talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns. 


Latest posts

Read more