Babies grow rapidly during the first year of life. Weight,
length, and head circumference measurements are plotted on growth charts to
monitor your baby's growth over time. Your baby grows at his or her own pace, and healthy growth is different for every baby. Your baby's natural growth rate may be slower or faster than the examples below. Most babies:
7.5 cm (3 in.) to
10 cm (4 in.) in length by
4 months of age. Although growth may slow slightly between 4 and 7 months of
age, by 12 months of age most babies have grown a total of about
25 cm (10 in.) in length
since birth and are about
70 cm (28 in.) to
80 cm (32 in.) long.
Gain an average of about 2 kg (4.5 lb) to 2.75 kg (6 lb) by 4 months of age. Birth weight usually doubles by 6 months of age and triples sometime
between 9 and 12 months of age.
Have an increase in head circumference of about
0.5 cm (0.2 in.) to
1 cm (0.5 in.) a month.
The soft spots, or
fontanelles, on top of a baby's skull begin to close
at 6 months but won't completely grow together until sometime between the 9th
and 18th month.
When your baby is about 6 months old,
teething may begin. Teeth may not yet break
through the gums at this age, but your baby may drool, chew on objects or
hands, and act fussy from the pressure of new teeth coming in.
is important to keep in mind that each baby is different, and growth patterns
can change between routine checkups. If you have concerns, talk to
your doctor about the many things that can affect your baby's growth. Physical growth requires adequate nutrients and a nurturing
ByHealthwise Staff Primary Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD - Pediatrics Thomas M. Bailey, MD - Family Medicine Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerLouis Pellegrino, MD - Developmental Pediatrics