As parents, you want to give the best possible care to your baby. That means you need to put in some efforts in zeroing on the right paediatrician for your child. Babies are fragile and they tend to fall sick often, which is why you need to select a right paediatrician, whom you can contact whenever your baby feels down. The best way to find the best paediatrician is of course, by asking around friends and family. Recommendations must always be welcome as it comes with a great deal of first-hand experience. Even your gynaecologist or obstetrician, the midwife could be a great start to seeking recommendations about a well-known paediatrician. And once you’ve a list of paediatricians, you need to ask them certain questions to decide whom you would like for your child.
General Questions to Ask Your Child’s Pediatrician
You need a doctor for your child who has hands-on experience and can guide you effectively when your child is sick. So before settling for one, you need to ask the potential paediatricians certain questions like their experience, the medical school they attended, and more. Below is a list of such questions that you can ask a paediatrician.
- How long have you been practising and are you certified by the board?
- Which medical school did you attend?
- Do you accept insurance plans?
- Do you have any sub-specialities?
- What is your philosophy on childcare? What are your views on vaccines, immunizations, breastfeeding, circumcision, sleep training, etc.?
- Will you offer advice on parenting strategies and tips on how to help children develop socially and emotionally?
- Do you recommend using baby formula?
- What would you suggest parents do to keep their babies safe?
- How long does a typical check-up last for?
- Will the initial meeting with the baby be at your clinic or at the hospital?
- What is your schedule for baby check-ups?
- What are your office hours? Will you be available to see us during the weekends or evening on weekdays?
Questions to Ask the Staff
Most clinics have an administrative or a small team at the front desk that handles phone calls and general queries. They could well be the first point of contact to get in touch with a paediatrician. They could be the ones you could ask questions about the functioning of the clinic and any queries about insurance policies and reimbursements. Read on to find out some questions that you could ask office and staff members.
- Do you have any other doctor/nurse practitioner/physician and assistants in the practice?
- Who will see the child in case of an after-hours emergency?
- Which hospital is the doctor affiliated with?
- If a child is admitted, can parents stay overnight at the clinic?
- Is this practice a solo or group practice? If it is solo, what cover do you have when a doctor is not around? If it is a group, what do they specialise in and when do they give visits?
Questions to Ask a Paediatrician As Per a Child’s Age
The questions to the paediatrician listed above are more generic in nature. But as your child grows and meets his milestones (or is unable to meet them on time), you will have questions regarding your child’s growth and development. Read on to find the list of questions that you should be asking to a potential paediatrician for your child, as per his age.
Baby (0-1 Year)
- How much should I feed my newborn? Do I need to follow any strict guidelines?
- What is the best way to make sure that my baby is getting enough Vitamin D?
- Could you recommend a lactation consultant? Do you have any suggestions on how (and how often) should a child be breastfed?
- How can I make sure that my baby is getting enough sleep?
- Is my newborn’s sleep pattern normal? Is there anything I can do to ensure he sleeps through the night?
- How often should I change my baby’s diaper?
- How can I make vaccination shots easy for my baby?
- How should I care for the umbilical cord of my baby?
- What is the best way to bathe my baby?
- What are the pros and cons of circumcision?
Toddlers and Preschoolers (1-4 Years)
- What techniques do you think will work for potty training my toddler?
- Is there is a specific regime that we should follow for potty training?
- What are the typical milestones for every age group?
- What kind of normal speech patterns are dominant in growing toddlers?
- What could be the reasons for my child’s disobedience and rebellious behaviour?
- What are the best ways to discipline toddlers and preschoolers?
- What are the signs of autism? How will I understand if my child is autistic?
Children (5-8 Years)
- How will I understand whether or not my child’s behaviour is a sign of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)?
- What kind of physical activity should my child engage in and for how long?
- What is the best way to teach my child about private parts?
- How do I teach good manners to my child?
- Is it normal for children to confuse numbers and letters?
- What are the signs of learning disability in a child?
- How do I know my child is growing and developing just fine and meeting his milestones on time?
- Is my child’s weight a good indicator of his health?
- How do I teach my child the difference between the good and bad?
- How do I teach my child about how to use the internet safely?
Raising kids can bring a lot of joy and adventure in your lives, but it can also bring self-doubt and apprehension. Watching your baby meet his milestones will make you ecstatic, and the moment your baby sneezes or has a mild fever, you will be in panic mode. The only way to not worry is by selecting a good paediatrician for your child. Now that you have enough questions to ask a paediatrician, selecting one shouldn’t be a problem. Choose carefully, and trust us, a paediatrician will make your journey of parenting so easy, especially in the initial years!
Also Read: How to Choose Paediatrician for Your Kid