Boots WebMD Partners in Health
Return To Boots

Newborn & baby health centre

Select a topic to explore more.
Select An Article

Understanding baby growth charts

Your baby's growth is documented at every appointment they attend in the 'red book' or personal child health record.

Key measurements include their weight and length. Length is the equivalent of height, but takes into account the fact that babies can't stand.

There are lines on the growth charts, called centile lines. Because children grow at different rates, depending on whether they are a girl or a boy, or where they start on the graph, the lines help track healthy development.

Babies usually stick fairly closely to their original centile line, but can go up or down a little over the months ahead.

Centile lines are based on average development of 100 UK babies. If one child out of this 100 is on the 50th length centile, 49 children would be shorter, but 50 would be taller.

Because children are anything but average, health professionals will look at the lines taking into account other factors, such as ethnic background, whether the baby was born prematurely and any health conditions they have.

Baby boys' growth chart

boys_growth_chart_ud.jpg

Baby girls' growth chart

girls_growth_chart_ud.jpg

Next Article:

WebMD Medical Reference

Medically Reviewed by Dr Rob Hicks on December 31, 2015

Children's health newsletter

Tips to inspire healthy habits
Sign Up Now!

Popular slideshows & tools on BootsWebMD

woman_holding_head_in_pain
How to help headache pain
rash on skin
Top eczema triggers to avoid
boost your metabolism
Foods to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol
period_questions_answered
Tips to support digestive health
woman looking at pregnancy test
Is your body ready for pregnancy?
sick child
Dos and don'ts for childhood eczema
girl_sneezing_into_tissue
Treating your child's cold or fever
bucket with cleaning supplies in it
Cleaning and organising tips
adult man contemplating
When illness makes it hard to eat
woman holding stomach
Understand this common condition
cold sore
What you need to know