I grew up envying other kids' cute dimples. Is it possible my baby might have them?
Yes, if your partner has a dimpled grin, or if it's in the background of one of your families. "Dimples are considered dominant, and to see a dominant trait, only one parent has to have the feature to possibly pass on the gene," Tribble says. Likewise, your child stands to inherit your (or your partner's) freckles, cleft chin, cowlick, widow's peak, rolling tongue, even hairy earlobes. "These are more predictable traits that definitely run in families," says Bennett.
Of course, you can't pick and choose what comes in the genetic package. "Sometimes when we evaluate children with minor abnormalities -- say, ears that are shaped funny or webbed toes -- it turns out that it's simply something that runs in the family," says Barbara Burton, MD, clinical practice director in the division of genetics, birth defects, and metabolism at Children's Memorial Hospital, in Chicago.