How to measure baby length for a growth chart

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How to measure baby length for a growth chart
Baby length is recorded in conjunction with weight on a growth chart. (baby image by Dron from

A growth chart tracks your baby's height and weight changes over her first years. These changes allow a comparison to be made of your baby's development compared with the typical growth rate at her age. According to Kid's Health, doctors track your baby's changes at each checkup. If you would like to keep a home growth chart as a sentimental record of your baby's first years, you will need to know how to measure her length. According to James Gaylord and Michelle Hagen, authors of "Your Baby's First Year for Dummies," length is the term used to describe a baby's height until she is 36 months of age.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Blanket
  • Tape measure
  • Assistant

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  1. 1

    Spread a blanket over a table or countertop to protect your baby from the cold surface.

  2. 2

    Lay your baby on the blanket-covered surface with the top of her head against a wall.

  3. 3

    Gently press down on your baby's knees to straighten her legs so you can get an accurate measurement.

  4. 4

    Ask your assistant to measure the length from the wall down to the baby's heels.

  5. 5

    Record the resulting number in inches onto your baby's growth chart.

Tips and warnings

  • According to Roni Jay and Richard Craze, authors of "Babies for Beginners," you should always measure your baby with an assistant because attempting to restrain and measure the baby yourself can be dangerous.
  • Measure your baby when she is happy and content so there is less resistance when you are restraining her.
  • If your baby struggles too much, stop trying to restrain her and measure her at another time. Never apply excessive force to attempt to make her quit struggling.

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