Taking Your Child to a Wellness Visit
We’ve talked about your baby’s first trip to the pediatrician, but what about other kids? In today’s post, we’re discussing the ins and outs of taking your child to a wellness visit.
Just a Checkup
Kids grow up far too quickly. Just a little while ago, you were looking for basic guidelines for what to look for in a pediatrician. Hopefully now that they are a little older, you’ve already found a reliable and trusted doctor for their needs.
That said, since the pandemic, a great many medical issues have gone undiagnosed. As it turns out, many people of all ages simply weren’t going for regular checkups with their doctors. That goes for kids as well. If a lot of time has passed since a child's last wellness visit, it may be time to rectify the situation.
What Happens in a Wellness Visit?
A wellness visit is just a fancy name for a checkup! These appointments aren’t made when your child is sick. Instead, it allows the doctor the opportunity to assess your overall health. For this reason, it is important for every person to have a general heath exam. In a nutshell, the pediatrician will explore a few basic measurements. These can include:
- the child’s weight and height
- body mass index, or BMI, can help track growth and development,
- and blood pressure, heart rate and breathing.
- If there are any required shots, this is when they’ll happen.
Aside from basic weight and measurements, each age group has some unique changes that the doctor will consider during the visit. We’ll break down the age groups in the next section, but let’s talk about what the task of taking your child to a wellness visit means for the parents.
For younger kids, this will be a great time to ask any burning heath questions you might have. These questions could include medical topics, developmental… even topics such as what the child could expect from that year at school. Not only that, mental health is a serious issue, even for kids. It never hurts to ask questions and learn a bit more.
In turn, the pediatrician will likely have some questions and advice for the parents and the patient.
Check Ups for Toddlers
A newborn is one thing, but a toddler is significantly more developed. This means new challenges and advancements to be checked by the pediatrician. Typically, these visits will include questions about any behavioral changes as well as everyone’s wellbeing. This wellness visit will focus on the toddler’s language, and the child's listening and social skills.
Elementary School Age and Beyond
As the patient gets a bit more mature, so will the questions from the wellness visit. Kids will be asked about their sleeping habits, physical activity and more. The parents will typically be questioned about behavior, motor skills, and language skills. Questions about reading and cognitive ability will often come into play as well.
Ah, the teenage years. During these times, the child may not even want a parent to enter the examination room with them. Boys will likely be checked for hernias and testicular cancer. Girls may be taught to perform a monthly breast exam and advised to visit a gynecologist.
No matter the age, the wellness visit will change along with the growing child. It is a learning experience for the child as well as the parents.