Once your baby arrives, it’s not the end of frequent trips to the doctor, it’s the beginning. While you no longer have to check on the health of your unborn child, you will be picking up the phone to call the doctor’s office every time your baby has a sniffle, takes a fall, or cries more than usual.
As a result, it is important to have chosen a pediatrician before your little one arrives.
Aside from looking for reassurance for all your health concerns, there are also the well-baby exams and the vaccination schedule that will have you seeing your baby’s doctor more than you thought you’d see any doctor in a single year.
The Baby Center provides a list of exam checklists that you can print off to either prepare yourself for each visit.
After you have received the initial exam following birth, which usually occurs 2 to 3 days after birth, the US National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health recommend visits for preventative care at 1 month, 2 months, 4 months, 6, months, 9 months and 12 months for the first year.
For all of these reasons, you want to make sure your pediatrician is someone that makes you feel comfortable.
Here are some tips for finding the right doctor for your child
Choose in Advance
Don’t wait until your baby arrives before you try to choose your pediatrician. The hospital where you deliver will ask for your child’s doctor name, and if that doctor has privileges at that hospital, he or she will do the first evaluation of your child.
Otherwise, one of the hospital pediatricians will do the first evaluation of your newborn.
Regardless of who does your hospital evaluation, your baby’s first follow-up visit is usually within the first few days of being released from the hospital.
As a result, the start of the third trimester is a good time to start researching who you should choose to care for the health of your new addition
Check with your friends and family members with young children. Ask them what they think of their pediatrician. You can also ask your obstetrician for recommendations.
Usually, they have a list of pediatricians that their patients use and have recommended.