Baby Head Circumference: Everything You Need To Know About Growth

"The first year with your baby is always particularly exciting. The developmental spurts are great, especially when it comes to your baby’s head circumference. No wonder: because the development of the brain progresses quickly. That’s why your pediatrician will check your baby’s head circumference regularly.

Baby’s head circumference – an important indicator

The head circumference of your baby is an important indicator for the doctor whether your baby is developing normally and healthily. For this reason, the pediatrician checks your baby’s head circumference, height and weight using percentile curves. The values help your doctor to decide whether your baby is developing healthily.

On the other hand, the specialist can determine at an early stage whether neurological diseases are present. For this reason, the head circumference is also measured during the first U examinations. The first early detection examination, the so-called U1, is carried out immediately – at the latest 30 minutes later – by the doctor or midwife. The head circumference of your baby will also be measured with a measuring tape.

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Baby’s head circumference: already measurable during pregnancy

Your baby’s head circumference is measured not only after birth, but already during pregnancy. During ultrasound examinations, measurements are taken around the head of the fetus in the womb. The gynecologist determines whether the fetus is developing in time.

Head circumference of the baby from 0 to 12 months: An overview

According to the WHO, the average head circumference of newborn males is 34.5 centimeters. For girls it is slightly smaller at 33.9 centimeters. In a one-month-old boy it is 37.3 centimeters, in girls the average value is 36.5 centimeters. In the second month, the value for boys is 39.1 centimeters, for female newborns it is 38.3 centimeters.

Here is an overview of the other average data:

  • 3. Month – 40.5 cm (boys) – 39.5 cm (girls)
  • 4. Month – 41.6 cm (boys) – 40.6 cm (girls)
  • 5. Month – 42.6 cm (boys) – 39.5 cm (girls)
  • 6. Month – 43.3 cm (boys) – 42.2 cm (girls)
  • 7. Month – 44 cm (boys) – 42.8 cm (girls)
  • 8. Month – 44.5 cm (boys) – 43.4 cm (girls)
  • 9. Month – 45 cm (boys) – 43.8 cm (girls)
  • 10. Month – 45.4 cm (boys) – 44.2 cm (girls)
  • 11. Month – 45.8 cm (boys) – 44.6 cm (girls)
  • 12. Month – 46.1 cm (boys) – 44.9 cm (girls)
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You can measure the circumference yourself at home in addition to the medical examinations. This is quick and easy with a flexible measuring tape.

Tip: It is best to measure your baby’s head circumference when he or she is sleeping. This way you avoid an inaccurate result.

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