When your baby is young, you will need to take them to the pediatrician more often for checkups than you will as they get older. This will help ensure that any health problems are detected early. Plus, your pediatrician will answer any questions you have about your child's health and development, which will keep you informed and help you take better care of your child. But what should you expect during these early pediatric appointments? Take a look.
Weight and Height Tracking
Your pediatrician will check your child's weight and height at each appointment. It's not just their weight and height at any particular time that matters; it's the way their height and weight change over time. If your child is not gaining weight as quickly as they should be, or if they are gaining weight too quickly, this may suggest to your pediatrician that there is something going on that should be looked into. A slow-down in growth height-wise can also indicate certain problems, such as bone disorders or malnutrition.
Vaccines are important in order to protect your child from an array of infectious illnesses. More and more, doctors are becoming aware of the importance of spreading out vaccines in order to give the body more time to generate an immune response. Because of this, your child will likely get a vaccine or two at each of their baby visits, rather than getting a bunch of vaccines all at once. Your pediatrician should discuss each vaccine and its pros and cons with you.
Examination of the Ears, Nose, and Throat
Respiratory infections, like the common cold, can be really common in babies since they have not had a chance to build immunity to the viruses that cause these illnesses yet. A common cold can easily turn into an ear infection, too. At these early visits, your pediatrician will spend plenty of time examining your child's ears, nose, and throat for any signs of illness or abnormality.
Observation of Development
Expect the pediatrician to conduct a few tests to measure your child's development. They may tap certain areas to measure their reflexes, see how well they are crawling, ask you about their eating habits, and so forth. Delays in development will be noted, as they may or may not be a sign of a developmental disorder.
To learn more about what will happen during a pediatric appointment, reach out to a pediatrician like those at Ada Pediatrics PA. They should be happy to answer any questions you have prior to the appointment.