As parents of toddlers or infants, there’s no denying that a visit to the doctor with your child in tow is a weekly or atleast bi-weekly affair. Whether it be for a cold, fever, rash, stomach ache, a minor injury from a fall or even a regular check-up, your little tykes find themselves being treated by a doctor ever so often. And you find yourself taking medical advice from them just as often. And since these pieces of advice help you make important decisions regarding your child’s well being and health, it becomes necessary to choose only the best doctor- a pediatrician, only after lengthy consideration—a task which, admittedly, can prove to be a bit difficult.
A common question: what does a peditarician do?
A pediatrician is a physician who specializes in children’s (ages 0-18) ailments or conditions of the physical, mental or emotional nature. A different approach, other than the ones used for adults, is to be used when treating kids for the same illnesses, and a pediatrician is trained in it.
Here’s a list of 7 things to look for before settling on a pediatrician for your kid:
Experience and credentials
One of the most critical factors used to assess the quality of any doctor and their skill is the years of experience they have. A pediatrician with a minimum experience of over 5-6 years will be an ideal choice. Also, check if the physician is approved and certified by your local board.
Now, liking kids and being trained to handle their ailments is one thing and knowing how to manage their behaviour and making them like you is another. Getting toddlers to answer questions and communicate requires tact that only a good pediatrician will have. On your first visit, you might want to observe how they interact with your child and how they respond.
Availability and reachability
Always choose a pediatrician that is easy to contact or reach. Firstly, the doctor’s office should be no further than a 10-minute drive from your place. Do they take last minute appointments? Are they available on weekends or in the evenings? Do their timings clash with your schedule? The answer to at least the first two questions should be a firm yes as emergencies wait for no one.
Observe how the doctor presents themself if they’re well-kempt and their office well organized. Professionalism is a critical trait that says a lot about a doctor. Any pediatrician you choose for your child should be polite, courteous and willing to discuss your child’s health rather than only prescribing medicines.
Again, an essential trait you should not skip checking as you cannot let a doctor unsure of and questioning his judgement treat your kid. Any pediatrician who has a good understanding of their field and has immense medical knowledge will be self-assured and confident, reflecting in their treatments.
A good pediatrician will answer even your most minor queries from ‘what does a pediatrician do?’ to ‘How can I ensure my child’s well being?’ with patience. In addition, a pediatrician should have excellent communication skills when it comes to parents and when it comes to your children.
Choosing a doctor for your kid is easily one of the most daunting tasks for a parent. Use these traits as a checklist, and any pediatrician that ticks these boxes will be a good choice!