Our children are our responsibility and that is why we should make sure they stay healthy from the moment they’re born until they reach their adulthood. Your child’s pediatrician would inform you with the important medical checkups and treatments that should be taken but it is important to have a background. After all, knowledge is power. Continue reading for more beneficial information.
Prevention of disease is better than catching it and spending a lifetime of suffering. Children under the age of twelve should be vaccinated for hepatitis A and B, polio, varicella and DTaP. An annual flu vaccination is recommended too. Immunization against the human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted disease, is also recommended. If you are afraid from risks of vaccination, check with your child’s doctor and s/he would tell you the vaccine’s safety.
2. Body Mass Index (BMI)
A child’s growth can be monitored using the BMI which is calculated by multiplying weight (pounds) by 703 then dividing the result by the square of the height (inches). Your child’s doctor will keep a record of changes in the BMI to keep an eye on growth and development and ensure they are going on a healthy track.
3. Dental Checkup
Monitoring over dental development should start within six months of the appearance of the first tooth. After that, repeat the visit to the doctor semiannually for checkups and teeth cleaning. Dental care is important to protect your child’s smile and help it last in good health.
4. Optical Exam
Vision screening is usually performed prior to the age of 5 whether or not an eye problem is seen. Basic eye tests are then regularly made on an annual basis along with physicals. Early optical exams would help recognize eye problems before they get worse.
5. Cholesterol and Blood Pressure Check
Adults are not the only ones who would suffer from high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Therefore, it is recommended that children from the age of 9 to 11 get tested for high cholesterol. A yearly physical from the age of 3 would also include blood pressure tests.
The next medical treatments and checkups are designated for teenagers:
1. Scoliosis Screening
This is a simple screening that is usually performed at middle and high schools. The doctor feels the child’s spine through his/her clothing to check for abnormal curvatures of the spine. Scoliosis screening is done at this age because scoliosis’s first appearance usually follows the growth spurt that precedes puberty.
2. Emotional Monitoring
Due to hormonal changed, teenagers go through a tough time of emotional ups and downs. Unfortunately, kids at this critical age might not open their hearts to their parents and that is why it is important to open the door for emotional screening. Alerts like eating disorders means that you need to immediately schedule an appointment for your child with a professional.
3. Gynecological Appointment
Upon beginning adolescence, every young lady should have her first gynecological visit to discuss her period along with other gender related issues. Advices for sexual activity and birth control would also be provided. Issues like the frequency of menstruation cycle and what is normal about it would be discussed.
4. Annual Physical
There are many body changes that take place during teenage. An annual physical is needed to make sure that everything runs smoothly. Such a checkup also provides an opportunity for your child to discuss with the doctor his/her body development and get things clear.
Throughout your child’s growth, doctors may ask for other tests according to your child’s health. However, the previous checkups are the main required ones.