Babies born late may become smarter than those born at full term

FLORIDA (WIVB) — A new study says children born at 41 weeks may become smarter than those born at full term, which would be 39 or 40 weeks.

The later babies scored better overall on tests in Florida than the full term kids.

This information comes from records for nearly 1.5 million children in Florida. They were all single births born between 37 and 41 weeks. The later birth babies showed higher cognitive functioning in elementary and middle school.

However, there was also a slightly higher chance of having a physical disability at that age. Doctors call it a possible “trade-off” between physical and cognitive outcomes.

They say it could help parents and doctors make decisions about inducing delivery, and perhaps wait to do that until they are overdue, rather than ahead of time.

Read the study here. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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