If you've got a November due date, consider yourself—and your baby—lucky in the birthday department.
Welcoming a little one this month means a lifetime of birthday celebrations that don't have to compete with Halloween and aren't too close to Christmas either. Your baby will be greeted by twinkling holiday displays, but outdoor temperatures that are still pretty tolerable (depending on where you live). The month of your baby's birth will impact their whole life, and even aspects of their personalities.
Here are six reasons why kids born in November are special:
1. They tend to be bigger
Kids born at this time of year tend to be bigger at birth—and throughout childhood—than those born in the summer. Research out of Harvard shows that kids born in the cooler months tend to be longer at birth, and heavier and taller at age seven.
2. They're likely to be good athletes
A study of athletic ability in school kids found those born in November are among the most athletically-inclined. Kids born this month often performed 10 to 15% better than their peers in athletic skill tests.
3. They're more likely to go to sleep earlier
Research has shown that kids born in the spring and summer generally go to bed later than those born in the fall and winter. The science suggests November babies are not as likely to be night owls as their spring-born peers (which is good news for any expecting parents who are already feeling tired).
4. They're more likely to be hyper-focused
Studies at Columbia and in Sweden have both found that children born in November are more likely to receive a diagnosis of ADHD down the road, so your November baby may grow up to be hyperfocused in their career, according to researchers at Pepperdine University. (Focusing a goal-oriented approach to time management and self-esteem can help November babies who do have ADHD.)
5. They're more likely to be left-handed (if they're a boy)
According to research out of the University of Vienna, baby boys born from November to January are more likely than other babies to be left-handed. A study of 13,000 adults revealed, 7.5% of women and 8.8% of men were left-handed. When they looked at the male birth dates, researchers found the biggest number of average left-hander birthdays fell between Halloween and New Year's Eve.
6. They have a lower risk for some diseases
A study out of the UK found a November birthday may reduce a person's chances of developing immune diseases, including multiple sclerosis. The link is thought to be related to vitamin D levels in pregnancy, as kids born in November have benefited from gestational summer sunlight.
And a bonus: They're more likely to live longer
According to research out of the University of Chicago, kids born this time of year are more likely to see their 100th birthday than those born in other months. The study's results suggest early-life environmental conditions may have long-lasting effects, the study's author's note.
The science proves that a November due date means your child will be different than if they'd been born at any other time of the year.
As noted Oxford University neuroscientist Russell Foster once said, "How long you live, how tall you are, how well you do at school, your body mass index as an adult, your morning-versus-evening preference and how likely you are to develop a range of diseases are all correlated to some extent with the time of year in which you emerge from the womb."
A Thanksgiving baby will have their ups and downs, but a November birthdate is definitely something to be thankful for.
[Originally published November 2, 2017]