When our children are thankfully well, we often neglect the fact that annual check-ups are recommended by their doctors. Why? Because they may be expensive or inconvenient when everyone is overwhelmed with busy schedules. However, these are not good reasons to ignore making an appointment. Check-ups are a vital part of every child health care regimen.
Assessing Overall Health
Regular check-ups are crucial for evaluating a child’s overall health. If you only bring your child to the doctor when they are ill, you may miss out on crucial signs of a potential problem. Check-ups track whether your child’s growth pattern is off, or if they gained or lost weight suddenly. There may even be other child health care concerns that can only be detected through routine blood and urine testing.
Due to the fact that visits are recorded in the doctor’s charts, an astute physician will immediately notice if there is something wrong. If a physician catches a serious medical issue early on, then an intervention with a specialist can be quickly arranged. Many maladies, such as cancer, do not present symptoms until it may be too late.
Assessing Normal Development
Aside from growth, there are also other developmental milestones that can be easy for first-time parents to miss. Babies are expected to lift their head, roll over, and crawl at approximate times in their development, and physicians keep track of these milestones to ensure that a child is advancing normally.
When these events occur later than usual, or not at all, it can mean that there are delays that must be addressed. Sometimes children that exhibit such signs will struggle to walk and speak at the proper time, and regular doctor visits can determine the cause and treatment of delays.
Physicians can check for common early childhood diseases and provide immunizations to prevent these types of illnesses and infections.
They can also screen for genetic illnesses during routine check-ups to ensure that there are no early signs that may go undetected. Child health care should always include an evaluation of the medical history of a child’s immediate family, as well as a close watch on symptoms or signs of anything that could be inherited.
Try to make time for your children to visit their doctor for annual check-ups. You can even prepare a list of questions to discuss with him or her prior to the visit. It is important to take this time to get all of your child health care, nutrition, and development inquiries addressed.