As a new parent, it is important for you to observe your child’s physical growth and behavior. You may attempt to track your child’s growth at home using some of the same techniques that a pediatrician would use in an office. If he or she is content, curious, active, alert, and eating well, then you most likely have a healthy and well-developing child.
Keeping track of growth charts at home and weighing your child frequently is not actually necessary unless recommended by your pediatrician. However, letting the pediatrician’s medical staff complete their job by taking and assessing detailed measurements and observations at regularly scheduled appointments is highly recommended. The following will discuss the measuring and physical exam processes, and what to expect at your next visit to the pediatrician.
Measuring height and weight to evaluate growth
When the pediatrician enters the examination room, they will interact with your child to see that he or she is alert and responsive. Then, the professional will weigh and measure your child’s height. This information will be recorded on a graph that will show the percentile that your child fits into. For example, your child’s height and weight may show that they are in the 70th percentile. This means that your child weighs more and measures taller than 70 percent of the children in his or her age group.
Some parents like to ask their pediatrician about how tall their child will be when they are an adult. There are so many factors that will influence this outcome that some professionals do not feel comfortable giving a definite answer to this question. Some people think the child’s height will be influenced by the average height of their parents. Others mention folk wisdom that states that a child will be twice their height as measured at the end of their second year. However, a child may be taller or shorter than these estimates.
Discussing a physical exam to help evaluate growth
After taking height and weight measurements, the pediatrician may start a physical exam of the joints, skin, eyes, ears, and other major areas of the body. The pediatrician may use tools to look into the child’s eyes and ears. The stethoscope may be used to listen to breathing and heartbeats. They may also gently press on the child’s abdomen to check internal organs.
It may be helpful for you to bring along a favorite doll or stuffed toy to the appointment. The pediatrician can use the toy to show the child how the exam will go. This can get rid of any worries that you or your child may have about the physical exam. The pediatrician should begin a discussion with you about your child’s motor skills, speech, and eating habits and address any questions you have. Safety tips or other suggestions may also be given to you by the pediatrician or their staff.
What to expect from Dr. John Young and his staff
Dr. John Young is a pediatrician located in the Amarillo area who strives to provide the best service possible for children and their parents. We provide the highest quality care and want both you and your child to have a positive experience at our office. Please give us a call today at (806) 354-0404 EXT. 3330 or Contact Us by email to learn more about our services. You can also visit our office in person at 1500 S. Coulter St., Suite #3 in Amarillo, Texas.