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The Most Common Birth Month: It’s Not November

The Most Common Birth Month: It’s Not November

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With the month of February and Valentine’s Day right behind us, you might’ve randomly thought of all the people in the world celebrating the “love month” and what they’re up to—the roses offered by stems or bouquets, assorted floral arrangements; gifts of chocolates, boxes of sweets, gift-wrapped promises; fancy candle-lit dinner dates, young ladies saying “yes” to their teenaged suitors, or men kneeling with a tiny box in their hand, proposing to their beloved; and partners getting drunk in love, waking up the next day with a smile (hopefully, instead of regret).

Indeed, whether one is single, in a relationship, or in a rather complicated situation, statistics show that businesses get a bump in sales thanks to everyone celebrating V-day with a bang. In fact, a local drive-in hotel in the Philippines experiences their busiest days during the days surrounding February 14. And you know what that means.

That being said, just in case you’ve ever wondered if November is the most common birth month to validate the increase in number of hotel check-in’s, then the short answer is no.

What is the most common birth month?

Calendar for birthdays
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While most people might assume that the most common birth month is November, given how we’ve just celebrated Valentine’s Day nine months prior, a quick Google search will show you how November is actually the month with the second-lowest observed birth rate in the U.S., at 11 percent back in 2019.

The “National Vital Statistics Report, Vol. 70, No. 2,” released on March 23, 2021, details the numbers on American births in 2019: August had the highest observed birth rate at 12.3 percent, equivalent to 341,685 births. Next to August is September, at 12.1 percent, and July at 12.0 percent, both of which have seen 325,781 and 333,646 births, respectively.

Counting back the months, this basically means that December is the real month for baby-making. The Smithsonian Magazine writes about why more babies are conceived in the cold winter months, citing evidence of seasonal reproduction.

Research shows that the seasonality of births is influenced by two factors: local temperature and length of day. Like a fertility calendar, the length of day (or how much time the sun is out) has the potential to drive human sexual behavior the same way that winter (or the cold months aka “cuddle weather”) – which coincides with the holiday season – influences biological reproductive signals in non-human mammals.

However, we cannot discount how there are other driving factors that can affect these seasonal birth patterns in humans, such as social, cultural, and environmental factors unique to certain locations around the world. In regions with extreme temperatures, for instance, it is typical to notice two birth peaks in a year.

Visme.com provides us with a heat map detailing birth patterns all over the world, contextualizing the data, and interpreting the trends. Using the latest UN data on live births, the article discusses the link between seasonality, peak birth months, and latitude (or the distance of a country north or south of the equator).

The countries with higher latitudes in the Northern hemisphere typically have the most births in July, August, and September. And as we move towards the tropical zone and closer to the equator, the countries’ peak birth months move later in the calendar year to September, October, and November, with some countries experiencing more births in December and January of the following year. Meanwhile, the countries in the southern hemisphere see more births during the months of March until May.

So, unfortunately, while it’s funny to think that Valentine’s Day is a huge reason for having a lot of Scorpios and Sagi’s in your life, the figures show otherwise. Christmas, after all, is the holiday season and the “Time of Giving,” which kind of makes sense if we want to account for all the July, August, and September babies.

What is the most common birth month in the Philippines?

Happy Birthday Candles
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In the Philippines, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) provides us with the following birth data in 2018: September had the most number of births, with 156,820, followed by October at 155,713, and November at 148,371. February had the fewest number of births, with 113,912.

In a similar report, the PSA’s data on registered live births in the Philippines in 2019 shows that the same months in 2018 were still the most common birth months. September, October, November, and January accounted for 9.2, 9.1, 8.8, and 8.8 percent share of the total births in the country, respectively. February was still the month with the fewest number of births.

So, what does this tell us? While we don’t have winter in the Philippines, we do have the Amihan, which refers to the season of trade winds during November and December. This is what we often interpret as the “colder weather” that we feel in the air. And alongside cooler temperatures, the Philippines also has a tradition of celebrating the holiday cheer throughout the ber months, so it comes as no real surprise that Filipinos follow the same seasonal pattern observed in U.S. births.

It can’t be denied that it’s nice to stay warm and cozy in bed when it’s cold out and one feels like Christmas is right around the corner.

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What is the most common birthday?

Since we’ve gone over the most common birth month, let’s zoom in on the most common birthday. Sports Illustrated, in their quest to find out the differences between a PGA golfer and the average person, discovered that one out of every nine of these professional athletes have birthdays in November. And diving deeper into birthday stats, SI.com cites that the most common birthday for Americans in 20 years (from 1994 to 2014) is September 9, as nine out of the 10 most common birthdays in the U.S. are in September.

Meanwhile, Reader’s Digest writes about the most common and least common birthdays using the same 20 years’ worth of data on births in the U.S. from 1994-2014:

The Most Common Birthdays

  • September 9
  • September 19
  • September 12

The Least Common Birthdays

  • December 25
  • January 1
  • December 24

The article also enumerates the possible reasons for having more birthdays in September than any other month. Similar to the Smithsonian’s mention of seasonal patterns, the article also cites the winter and holiday season – which offers people a good time to book a vacation – as a reason for the spike in the number of births in September. The article also adds that every day can pretty much be a common birthday, given how the gap between the number of births every month only differ by a few thousand babies.

Meanwhile, the least common birthdays, which fall on holidays, are even rarer than February 29 or leap day birthdays, which only appeared on calendars six times in those 20 years. This can be theoretically credited to couples choosing to give birth on or before the holidays, knowing how doctors are on vacation as well.

New born baby
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Your Takeaway from This Knowledge

It’s quite a random tidbit of knowledge, but here’s what we can take away from this: seasonal birth patterns, for the most part, can be attributed to human behavior, which is a product of one’s society, culture, and environment.

In the piece from Visme, it is mentioned that a published study on human reproduction cites how the two factors, a local temperature of 50 to 70 °F and 12 hours of day time, set the “perfect conditions” to make a baby, primarily influencing either sperm production, ovulation, or both.

That being said, holidays like Valentine’s Day can possibly influence birth rate, but there are many other factors that come into play, so to ruin the thought of a joke, it’s a bit of a stretch to conclusively think that the increased number of hotel check-in’s in February is enough of an indicator that we’ll be having more November babies every year. If anything, we’re only really giving in to a Hallmark holiday.

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