Being a parent is a wonderful feeling. Every new act or development of the child brings immense happiness to the parent. However, with immense joy comes immense responsibility too. The criteria of a job well-done for every parent is the overall health of the child. And the best judge to analyze the health of the child is their pediatrician. All visits to the pediatrician are important; however, the check-up of a 3 year old is essential. A 3-year-old child has started doing certain things that are crucial for their development. So on these visits, the pediatricians of a 3-year-old will check their mental growth and social development in addition to their physical well-being. This check-up visit is also a good opportunity for the parents to ask the pediatrician any questions they have about the growth and development of their child, as now their kid would be starting school. Now the parents should know things to take care of so that their kid can adjust and cope well in school. Therefore, it’s important the 3-year-old visits their pediatrician for the check-up to assess their development and growth.
What All Does a Doctor Check During The Checkup?
During the check-up the pediatrician will check the following things:
1. Check Weight and Height
The doctor will weigh and measure the child’s height to make sure the child is growing properly and steadily.
2. Check the Vital Statistics
Apart from the weight, the doctor will check the child’s vital stats, such as blood pressure, temperature, heart rate, breathing, etc., to make sure the kid is physically well.
3. Do a Physical Check
The doctor will do a complete physical check to make sure your child is developing well. The physical examination will be done in the presence of the parents, and the doctor will check eyes, ears, teeth, lungs, heart, fine motor skills, etc.
4. Blood Test for Anemia and Lead Poisoning
The doctor can also do some blood tests to check for anemia and lead poisoning risk in the child.
5. Tuberculosis Test
The doctor may do a tuberculosis test if the kid has a risk factor for it.
6. Check for Cognitive and Speech Development
The doctor will also check the child’s speech, cognitive development, and language skills by asking questions about the things they enjoy, books they read, etc. They will also give directions to the child to check whether they follow commands. The doctor may ask the kid to draw something to check their development.
Questions That a Child’s Doctor May Ask You
After doing the checks during the visit, the child’s doctor will also have some additional questions for the parents to further assess the child’s growth and development. For example, they can ask the following questions:
- How much does the child sleep? – A 3 year old child should ideally sleep for about 12 hours daily with some nap time in the afternoon. As the kid gets older, they develop their active imagination and fear the dark or being alone. This can cause disturbance in their sleep. So the doctor wants to know their sleep patterns to assess their development as adequate sleep is necessary for proper growth.
- Is the kid potty trained? – A 3-year-old toddler has gotten accustomed to using the potty, though they may still need to wear the diaper occasionally. However, some toddlers are still not ready for potty training. So the doctor will ask about it to know their growth.
- Has the child visited the dentist? The pediatrician will be interested in knowing the child’s dental health and whether the child is brushing by self or needs the parent’s help.
- Does the child eat healthy foods? – For proper growth and to have energy for a whole day of activities, the kid needs to eat a healthy and varied diet. The doctor will ask about their meals to know that.
- What games interest the kid? – The games and activities that interest the kid gives the doctor an insight into their growth.
- How does the child behave when left with someone else or in daycare? – The kid has grown, so it should be easy for them to be away from their parents. How well the kid adjusts away from them is a sign of their emotional maturity and feeling of security.
- Is the kid right or left-handed? – By the age of 3, almost all kids have a dominant hand. If ,in case , the kid is confused about which hand to use, then there could be some coordination issues.
- How well the child plays with other kids? – 3-year-old kids are generally reluctant to share their toys. The doctor may ask about this to gauge their behavior with other kids.
Are Vaccines Given At The Checkup?
During the check-up, vaccinations are not administered as most vaccines for kids are administered upto 20 months initially. Then the next rounds of vaccines generally start from 4 years onwards; however, it is better to be up-to-date with the kid’s checkup shots if some vaccination was missed. So during the 3 years doctor visit, it is best to consult the doctor for immunizations and get the missed vaccination administered.
Here is the list of vaccinations a 3 year old kid should have; in case any was missed, get it administered during the check-up visit:
What You Should Ask Your Child’s Doctor?
At 3 years, the kid would be starting preschool. Preschool is a huge step for both the parent and the child. Parents should consider this as a chance to ask the pediatrician for advice on making the transition as painless as possible for their child, especially if they believe their child may struggle to separate from them. Remember that the child’s doctor is there to answer any questions the parents may have. Some questions to ask the pediatrician are:
- How much food should I feed my child?
- What should I feed my child? Any food or drink to avoid?
- How often should I feed my kid? What is the right time to feed them?
- Ways to ensure the health of my child?
- How much screen time should I allow for my kid?
Important Tips For Checkup
Some important tips for the check-up are:
- The parents should note down all the questions they need to ask the doctor beforehand to avoid missing out on any question.
- When the doctor asks the child anything, the parents should let the child answer. This will let the doctor assess their development better.
- Try not to visit the doctor at the child’s naptime.
- Feed the child before the doctor’s appointment. A hungry child will be irritated during the check-up.
- The doctor may ask the child to draw to see their development. But at the time of check-up, the child may not want to draw, so take some previous drawings from home to be prepared for such a scenario.
The pediatrician visit is critical for parents to understand their baby’s development. During this appointment, the doctor examines the toddler to determine their development. It’s also a great opportunity for parents to get their questions regarding their child’s growth answered.