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Tennessee’s most popular baby names hold onto top spots


Number one names unchanged from 2008

NASHVILLE – New parents in the Volunteer State are sticking with Emma and William for a second consecutive year as the most popular names for girls and boys born in Tennessee. While the top spots remain the same, the list of most popular names for Tennessee babies born in 2009 includes some newcomers breaking into the top ten, and shows some formerly popular names falling out of favor.

The top ten names new Tennessee parents chose for their babies born in 2009* are as follows:

Rank Girls Boys
1 Emma William
2 Madison Jacob
3 Isabella James
4 Abigail Joshua
5 Olivia Elijah
6 Addison Noah
7 Ava Ethan
8 Emily Jackson
9 Chloe Aiden
10 Elizabeth Michael

The most popular names for both girls and boys born in Tennessee have held their top spots on the list since last year. In 2008, Emma and Madison topped the list of baby names for girls, and William and Jacob claimed the highest rankings for boys. The remaining names rounding out the 2009 list for girls includes all the same names from last year’s top ten, albeit in a different order, with Isabella jumping six spots from number 9 in 2008 to number 3 this year. Two new names broke the top ten for boys in 2009: Aiden and Michael, replacing Christopher and Jayden as among the most popular choices.

*provisional data

Prenatal nutrition is important

The Department of Health reminds all Tennesseans that the best way to ensure a healthy baby is to start with healthy parents. Preconception health is vital to positive pregnancy outcomes. All women of childbearing age should be sure to consume the recommended amount of 400 micrograms of folic acid daily, even if they’re not currently planning to become pregnant. Folic acid helps reduce the risk of neural tube defects, including spina bifida and anencephaly, if taken in adequate amounts before becoming pregnant and during the very early weeks of pregnancy.

Although all enriched cereals and grain products in the United States are fortified with the B vitamin folic acid, only one third of American women of childbearing age consume the recommended daily amount. Taking a multivitamin with folic acid every day is a simple way that women can get the optimum dosage.

Expectant mothers should stop smoking

Stopping tobacco use is another important part of improving overall health for prospective mothers. The Department of Health offers smoking cessation programs at all Tennessee county health departments, and places a special emphasis on assisting pregnant women who smoke. For more information, contact your local health department. A list of county health department locations and contact information can be found online at

The Tennessee Tobacco QuitLine also offers free counseling and support to all Tennessee residents who want to quit smoking or using other tobacco products. Learn more about this service by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW or visiting the QuitLine Web site at




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One Response to “Tennessee’s most popular baby names hold onto top spots”

  1. Scott Beasley Says:
    January 1st, 2010 at 6:41 am

    My wife and I just had our first. Wyatt Scott Beasley was born December 22nd.


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