The journey of being a parent is often a challenging one; it entails both physical and mental exhaustion. But as you witness your child’s genuine smile and laughter, it makes all the trouble worth it. As you bring a new human being to life, you’ve become responsible for their welfare, wellbeing, growth, and maturity. And so, you’ll require some support through it all.
In the early stages of your child’s growth, a reliable pediatrician is the one who will primarily sustain medical support and guidance. Since they become your child’s primary care doctor, choosing your kid’s pediatrician is crucial in ensuring your child’s health. Keep your child in their healthiest state, especially at their earliest age.
Before consulting and choosing a pediatrician at Rexburg Pediatrics or from a trustworthy hospital near you, here is some vital information to get yourself familiar with:
Understand The Different Kinds Of Pediatricians
Children’s health is the main focus of pediatricians’ practice. Children receive pediatric care from birth until their adolescent years, and sometimes they even extend through many years ahead. It’s the responsibility of pediatricians to prevent, detect, and treat children’s health issues. A large number of pediatricians practice primary care. This type of pediatrician performs checkups for health and wellness. Pediatricians are in charge of administering vaccinations to young people and offering appropriate health advice.
As a parent, one thing you should be keen about is the different kinds of pediatricians to reach out to. They also come in various specializations, such as the following:
This type of pediatrician identifies and treats pediatric heart conditions that are either congenital or acquired by the baby.
This doctor treats children’s cancers. This field comes with three treatments such as medical oncology, surgical oncology, and radiation oncology.
Children with breathing problems and lung diseases are diagnosed, treated, and managed by them.
Adolescent Medicine Specialist
This pediatrician focuses on caring for teens from 11 to 21 years of age.
These doctors treat growth disorders, puberty issues, diabetes, and other hormone and gland-related problems.
Critical Care Pediatrician
This doctor coordinates teams of healthcare professionals that treat children in critical or unstable health situations. They’re often working in ICUs.
Children’s kidney and urinary tract issues are diagnosed, treated, and managed by this pediatrician. Children with chronic kidney disease also have high blood pressure and problems with growth and development that need to be evaluated and treated by pediatric nephrologists.
This doctor evaluates children’s and teens’ behavioral development. It involves diagnosing and treating young people’s learning, behavioral, and developmental problems. They usually provide tips for you to understand your child better.
This doctor treats children and adolescents who have chronic pain and musculoskeletal disorders.
Managing neurological disorders in children is the focus of this doctor’s practice. A child’s neurological condition may persist into adulthood. From diagnosis through adolescence, pediatric neurologists manage patients’ care.
Before consulting and approaching a pediatrician, seek referrals from people you trust and look up to. Some reliable referrals should come from your family doctor, friends, colleagues, and other healthcare providers. If you intend to move to a new location or country, you can seek a referral from your previous pediatrician. Doctors usually share an international network and community; chances are they’ll know someone from the country or city you’re moving to.
Another option is to do your research and read customer reviews online. During your search, visit open houses hosted by many practices to learn more about them. Pediatricians can also be interviewed by appointment. Choosing a pediatrician doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing decision. Since you’re already seeing your Ob-Gyn doctor, they’ll indeed have someone in mind to refer as a pediatrician for your child.
Check Hospital Affiliation And Professional Network
Choose a pediatrician affiliated or connected to the same hospital, depending on the hospital where you’ve given birth. Upon delivery, it’d be ideal for your pediatrician to come and check your newborn baby. They need to perform inspections and check all health-related subjects of the baby.
However, if this is impossible, you can still seek consultation with your preferred pediatrician in their respective clinic. But it’s important to ask whether they’re affiliated with a specific hospital so that it’ll be convenient for you. You’ll be able to choose the pediatrician of your choice for your newborn as soon as possible.
Consider Their Experience
Pediatricians usually come with comprehensive and long experience. And this matters a great deal when considering which pediatrician to choose for your child. Your results are likely to be better if your pediatrician has more experience. This is because you’ll feel more confident that they can tackle any health condition of your baby, as they might have experienced similar cases with other patients.
Ask your pediatrician how many patients have been treated with a specific condition, which can be similar to your baby’s. This allows you to feel more at ease knowing that your doctor is an expert in that field.
Choosing Between MD Or DO
Medical school graduates can become pediatricians with either an MD (doctor of medicine) or DO (doctor of osteopathic medicine) degree. While this may not be that significant for others, it would be helpful to know the difference between the two. It’s important to note that both degrees prepare doctors to diagnose, treat, and try to prevent diseases when possible.
However, note that the difference occurs when DOs usually apply a holistic medical approach while MDs involve conventional approaches. However, when it comes to hands-on training, both degrees come with licenses to be doctors. There’s no difference in qualifications between the two. The only thing you must be more mindful of is that your pediatrician should be board certified and licensed to practice.
Check Their Education And Qualifications
Children must be treated by pediatricians who are trained, educated, and licensed. As parents, you rely 100% on the hands of the doctor who will be responsible for executing proper care for your baby. To become a pediatrician, medical school graduates must complete a 3-year residency program in pediatrics. They have the option to proceed to specialization after the residency program.
After completing their residency, some pediatricians begin practicing general medicine while others enter fellowship programs. However, state licenses are required before pediatricians can practice. Therefore, checking this qualification is crucial when choosing which pediatrician to entrust your baby with. Having good quality education and qualification means that your doctor is well-versed and expert in providing the best care for your child’s wellbeing.
Establish A Good Professional Relationship
Another essential variable to be aware of before choosing a pediatrician is the need for an excellent professional relationship with them. Good communication with your pediatrician is also crucial to establishing a good relationship. You probably have many questions to ask your pediatrician, and it would help if your doctor were approachable and accommodating.
Before each appointment, make a list of your concerns to ensure you don’t forget to ask anything important. Try to be transparent about the health of your child. When setting up your appointment, make sure you discuss all your concerns. It can be helpful to take down notes about their advice and recommendations for your child.
If you receive instructions regarding your child’s care, ensure you understand them. You can verify them the second time if it’s unclear to you. This is better than pretending to understand something that could be dangerous to execute if you’re not sure. By being honest with your pediatrician, you can build a stronger professional relationship that will keep both parties happy and satisfied.
Be Mindful Of Clinic Hours
While this consideration may not be on top of the priority list for some parents, it’s still worth including in this list. Consult the doctor’s office’s operation style to ensure it fits your schedule and needs. You would want to find a doctor who operates during clinic hours that also works for you. If you usually have a packed schedule on weekdays, consider going for pediatricians who entertain patients even on weekends.
It would help to ask about the different communication methods of the pediatrician. Perhaps they offer telemedicine consultation. This might be applicable for you if you’re having concerns about your baby but won’t be able to visit the clinic on the day.
Also, determine how to reserve a slot for your doctor’s appointment. See how long it usually takes to wait and what seats are available. It would be preferable to go to a doctor with a more organized appointment method. It’s a plus to go to a pediatrician clinic that comes with a play area so children can be busy playing there while waiting for their turn.
As a parent, one of your priorities is to care for your child’s health. Fortunately, pediatricians offer their support and medical knowledge to ensure your child will thrive. The role of pediatricians is varied; they can be primary care physicians or specialists specializing in certain age groups or conditions of children. Hopefully, you’ll consider all the aspects stated in this article before finally consulting a pediatrician.