One of the first things you’ll be wondering when you learn your pregnant is: when is my baby due? You’ll probably have a good idea yourself as soon as you’ve taken a pregnancy test, but your first appointment with a midwife or health professional will likely be able to help you confirm it.
Did you know that the estimated length of pregnancy not only differs from woman to woman, but also by culture? Where in the UK, we tend to say pregnancy lasts 9 months or 40 weeks, in France, medical professionals consider it to be 41 weeks.
Even though these are the suggested average pregnancy lengths, we all know that a due date isn’t 100% accurate. In fact, it can be far from it – figures from the Perinatal Institute show that only 4% of babies are born on their due dates! Any time between 37 and 42 weeks is considered full term for a normal, single pregnancy which means that, even if you and a friend have the same due date, your babies could be born over a month apart!
Nevertheless, no matter when your baby is due, there will be a few preparations you’d like to take. Depending on the time of year, you might need to purchase newborn summer or winter outfits; you might like to prepare a Christmas gift for a baby born in early December; or you might even be wondering about what school year your little one will fall into. But are there certain dates that are more popular than others for babies to be born? Our research suggests that with a resounding yes! Looking at due dates submitted by our Smart Cells families during our busiest times of year and using data sourced from the ONS on babies born between 1995 and 2016, we’ve compiled the most popular days of the year for babies to be born in the UK and created the below visualisation which clearly shows that there is by far a more popular month to be born, and one which is far less common.
The 10 Most Popular Birth Dates in the UK
1. 26th September – 1971 births
2. 23rd September – 1969 births
3. 30th September – 1967 births
4. 25th September – 1965 births
5. 24th September – 1961 births
6. 27th September – 1960 births
7. 22nd September – 1953 births
8. 29th September – 1951 births
9. 1st October – 1950 births
10. 19th September – 1949 births
Those who have spotted their birthdays in the top 10 most common birth dates in the UK will probably already know the reason why experts suggest that so many people are born around this time: Christmas! 9 months before the couple of weeks that all of these birth dates fall into are the annual Christmas holidays, meaning bank holidays, time off from work and celebrations. It’s easy to figure out that this likely means more opportunities for couples to conceive, but being away from the stresses of everyday life in combination with studies suggesting that sperm quality is higher during the winter months may also contribute towards increased conception rates at this time.
September is the Most Popular Birth Month
For those of us born in September, it’s probably no surprise to find out that 9 out of the 10 most popular birth dates are in this month. The stats show that, despite September being a shorter month, there are around 2,350 more births in this month than there are in December. This equates to more than 1 whole average day’s worth of births!
Not only are the celebrations of December credited for the popularity of September births, but parents planning ahead may also factor in. With data suggesting that children born early in the academic school year fare better than their younger peers, it’s likely that parents-to-be try to aim for their child to be born in late September or early October when possible. This timing is also beneficial to women in labour who often worry that labour during the summer months will be far more taxing in the warm weather!
The 10 Least Common Birth Dates in the UK
1. 26th December – 1362 births
2. 25th December – 1427 births
3. 1st January – 1582 births
4. 27th December – 1654 births
5. 24th December – 1710 births
6. 2nd January – 1717 births
7. 13th April – 1727 births
8. 1st April – 1729 births
9. 28th December – 1734 births
10. 30th November – 1740 births
The figures show that there are 45% fewer babies born on Boxing Day, the least common birth date in the UK, than there are on the 26th September, the most popular day.
It’s also not a surprise to see that the least common birthdays in the UK correlate with Bank Holiday dates such as Boxing Day, Christmas and New Years Day, as well as the surrounding days. It’s likely that those requiring an induction or C-section will not schedule these for those popular holiday dates, whether that’s due to not wanting to miss out on celebrations, struggling with childcare for older siblings, or because they worry that medical attention may not be as good on these dates.
The next least common birth dates fall in April, which may seem like an unusual month until you consider that summer conceptions are far less likely than winter ones. And 1st April as April Fools Day may worry parents who are able to make the decision to induce early or delay if possible!
Celebrities born on 26th September
If your birthday falls on 26th September, you’re certainly in good company! Here are just a few celebrities who share the date with you:
- Serena Williams – 1981
- Olivia Newton-John – 1948
- T. S. Eliot – 1888
- Anne Robinson – 1944
- Christina Milian – 1981