Growth and your baby

Babies come in all shapes and sizes and they do not gain weight at the same rate.

Personal Child Health Record

The Personal Child Health Record, also known as the PCHR or 'red book', is a national standard health and development record given to parents/carers at a child's birth. Your babies' growth chart can be found at the back of the red book. 

At the New Birth Contact your Health Visitor will talk to you about  what's inside and how to get the most out of it. The UK-WHO growth charts allow health professionals and parents to plot and measure your child's growth from birth.

The red book

What is a growth chart?

How often should my baby be weighed?

After the first two weeks, your baby should be weighed:

  • no more than once a month up to six months of age
  • no more than once every two months from 6-12 months of age
  • no more than once every three months over the age of one

Your baby will only need to be weighed more often than this if there are concerns about their health or growth.

If you are self-weighing your baby at home please watch this video, and if you have concerns about your babies' growth then please speak with a 0-19 health professional. 

Here is a further video regarding self-weighing your baby. 

 

How to weigh your baby

  • Place the scales on a hard flat surface, not carpet or a rug
  • Undress your baby
  • Press the start button and wait for 0.000 to appear on the display. 
  • The scale is then automatically set to zero and ready to use
  • Place your baby on the tray, ensuring that they lie as still as possible. If your baby can sit unaided, you can sit them on the scales. If not, please lay your baby on their back on the scales and ensure your baby is not holding onto anything which may affect the weight
  • Take a note of the weight. Take your baby off the scales and redress them. Turn to page 51 of your Red Book to record the date, your baby's age and weight.
  • Clean the mat and the scales with the antibacterial wipes or spray provided and put the rubbish in the bin.

How to plot the weight

To plot the weight on the chart:

  • Find your baby's age in weeks along the bottom of the chart and follow the line up to find the Kg's.
  • Place a mark on the chart on the correct age line and correct weight section
  • Plot in pencil and record the weight in pen

Graphic depicting how to plot your baby's weight

Graphic depicting how to record your baby's weight in the Personal Child Health Record

If your baby's growth is not progressing as expected then you may be asked to bring your baby to be reviewed by a member of the 0-19 team as part of the plan of care or a referral to your General Practitioner may be made. 

How do I know if my baby is getting enough breastmilk?

At the New Birth Visit your health visitor will complete the breastfeeding assessment with you. 

You can refer back to this to this any time you are worried.

There are some useful videos you can watch about position and attachment on our infant feeding page

Check out the Start4Life website 

The contents of your baby's nappies change day by day at first. These changes can help you know if feeding is going well.

Contact

If you have any questions please contact your Health Visitor or call our Surrey-wide 0-19 Advice Line