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Sleepovers & Bedtime

Going to the Doctor

Small children seem to spend a go to the doctor's office regularly. If it's not for routine checkups, it's immunizations or illnesses. Needless to say, during the course of your child's early years, you'll probably get to know her pediatrician very well. Your child's pediatrician is not only your best resource for great medical and preventative medical care, he is also your partner in navigating the ups and downs of parenting.

Preventative Care for Kids

You have probably already taken your child to the doctor for a few "well child" visits. Some people also call these visits "checkups." Your child's pediatrician will do a few very important things during her checkup like check to see how she's growing, how her speech is developing, and assessing her overall health. During these visits, your child's doctor charts her development and performs important tests. The visits are important not only because they enable your doctor to get to know your child as she grows, but may also be crucial in the early diagnosis of diseases and disorders. If you are unable to stick with the same pediatrician throughout your child's early years, make sure that her medical records are transferred to the new pediatrician so that he has the necessary background information on your child.

Talking to Your Child's Doctor

Some parents find doctor's visits intimidating. They have a hard time talking to the doctor or his nursing staff. It's important to become your child's healthcare advocate by making sure that you communicate with her doctor. If you find your child's doctor unwilling to communicate or you don't feel that he listens to your concerns, find another doctor. Your child's pediatrician and nursing staff should welcome communication to ensure that your child receives the best care possible.

Choosing a Pediatrician

Finding the right pediatrician can be difficult. But, the relationship you have with your child's doctor is crucial to her continued good health. It's ok to "interview" doctors until you find one that's a good fit. If you move, ask your child's pediatrician if he can make suggestions for a new doctor.

Affording Health Care for Kids

There's no doubt that health care costs are on the rise. Many parents are struggling to afford just the basics, let alone an expensive trip to the doctor for immunizations or if your child is sick. Even with insurance, the high cost of covering medical deductibles can be out of reach for many families. The good news is that there are many community programs that provide free or reduced cost services to families, especially children. Most communities have programs that will cover basic services like immunizations, and many have programs that enable parents to seek medical care for a sick or injured child at no (or at a reduced) cost to them. Never avoid getting your child medical care when she needs it.