Most parents will hardly give a thought to taking their child to a doctor when they are not ill. After all, if your child is well, where’s the need to go to the doctor, right? The truth is, regular good-child checkups are a vital part of your child’s overall health care. They allow your pediatrician to do a proper assessment of your child’s development, especially in those first crucial years.
What Happens in a Well Child Checkup?
Well-child checkups are checkups that you take your child to even though he or she is the picture of good health. These checkups are done at regularly scheduled appointments from the time the baby is born till they are three years of age.
During your good child visits, your pediatrician will conduct a few medical tests and administer certain medical services depending on your child’s age and health.
At every doctor check-up, your child’s height and weight will be measured to track healthy growth and progress. Also, the pediatrician will tell your child’s warmth and instant and do hearing and sight tests. If your child is below three years of age, the doctor may also decide to do a lead screening.
Immunizations are also an important part of these good-child visits.
Why Well Child Checkups are So Important
When you take a sick child to the doctor, everybody’s immediate concern is to get the child well and healthy again, and that becomes the focus of the visit. When you take a child who is not ill to the doctor, it allows the doctor to do a proper assessment of the child’s physical health.
These good check ups also act as an effective preventive measure. Because the visits are regularly scheduled and recorded, the doctor will immediately notice when something is wrong. This allows the doctor to identify problems in the early stages and recommend a course of action accordingly or refer you to a specialist if need be.
Preparing Yourself for a Doctor Visit
For parents, these visits are the ideal time to get all your questions answered and all doubts clarified. As parents, we worry about our children all the time. Are we doing the right thing? Is my child growing as he or she should? Should I worry because my child has not yet started walking or talking? We have a hundred questions going through our minds. While asking other parents can be helpful, sometimes it can only deepen our fears as every parent has a different experience. When it comes to your child’s health, it is best to get professional advice from your doctor. Make a list of questions and doubts as and when they crop up and take that list with you on your next visit so you can get all your doubts clarified. Use this time to get all your issues addressed whether they are of health and safety; growth and development; nutrition and diet or sleep habits.