The centerpiece of your child's health record is his growth chart. Children who are growing at the expected rate and whose height or length and weight are pretty well matched are generally healthy. Your health care provider will track your baby's height and weight on a percentile chart such as the ones below. Over time, your provider will be able to see whether your baby is growing at the expected rate. This chart will help you follow your child's growth along with the health care provider.
As your provider will tell you, healthy children come in lots of different sizes and the band of what's considered "normal" growth is very wide. Many children, for example, shift their place on the growth chart at about 6 months as they start to reflect the build they've inherited from their family. Earlier, their growth reflected how they grew before birth and their nutrition in the first months. Breastfed babies are fatter in the first few months and relatively thinner later on in the first year than children fed exclusively with formula. And some families have fast-growing babies, while others have slow and steady gainers. So keep these individual differences in mind as you follow your child's growth.
The charts below show the average growth patterns of boys and girls. There is a wide range of what's normal. Use these charts to track your own baby's growth and bring any questions or concerns to your child's health care provider.
Click below to select a chart for your baby.