The first few years of a child’s life are filled with so many firsts: their first cry, their first words, their first steps. Part of ensuring that your child grows and develops in the healthiest way possible during those early years is making regular visits to the pediatrician and receiving necessary immunizations.
Infants begin receiving immunizations at two months, with multiple booster vaccines necessary to ensure full immunity. These vital precautions will ensure that your little one remains at low risk for complications should they be exposed to infections and diseases that unfortunately still exist in our community.
While remaining up to date on immunizations is essential to ensure good health, it is one part of the entire health experience. During each of your infant’s visits, we spend time assessing their growth and physical development. We measure height and weight and plot it along a standard “growth curve” that helps to compare against normal development rates. Because children will follow a similar growth trajectory for much of their life, frequent measurement and evaluation allows us to ensure a healthy growth pattern. In fact, the more frequently your child is seen and measured, the more accurately we can assess their growth and identify any nutritional needs. If any concerns arise, we can address them and correct them in a timely manner.
For reference, see the growth charts we use for boys and girls, respectively, from birth to two years (there are separate charts for children over age of two years):
Beyond physical development, we will ask questions about mental, motor and cognitive milestones your baby has achieved since we the last check-up. The main categories that we assess are their development in gross motor, fine motor, verbal skills, and social interactions. Knowing which milestones your child has achieved helps us determine if they are developing at a normal rate. For example, did you know that your infant should normally be able to roll from back-to-front at four months of age? Yet there is a wide range of normal, so don’t worry if you answer “no” to some of our questions! If your infant isn’t walking at 11 months like your friend’s infant, don’t fret! Some infants won’t walk independently until about 15 months of age, and that is still normal!
While it may seem tedious to visit the doctor so often, these visits and the developmental assessments that occur during these visits are critical to your infants overall and life-long health!
Be sure to bring your infant in regularly for evaluation.