How Do I Get A Pediatrician For My Newborn

Key Questions To Ask When Choosing A Pediatrician

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A trusted doctor is an essential part of keeping your child healthy as they grow and develop. Choosing a pediatrician for your child is one of the first and most important decisions you make as a parent. But many new parents are not sure how to choose a physician or what questions to ask.

Finding a pediatrician isn’t difficult, but starting as soon as possible checks a key item off your to do list in time to make an informed decision before baby’s arrival.

There are many considerations, including a pediatrician’s training and experience, as well as their office’s location, hours and routines. Here are some helpful hints to find a quality doctor who is a good fit for you and your baby.

What To Do When Your Baby Is Sick

Use a spray disinfectant on frequently touched objects, such as phones, doorknobs, remote controls, toilets and sink faucets. Boil your babys nipples, pacifiers and toys, or wash them in hot soapy water, per the manufacturers directions. You might want to do this daily during times when family members are sick.

How Do I Find A Good Pediatrician

A combination of reliable recommendations and online research can help narrow your focus to a few top prospects. Ask people you trust, like your obstetrician, neighbors and friends. Use web searches to find pediatricians in your area and look into reviews. You can also get a list of doctors from your insurance company and hospitals or healthcare systems, including this Novant Health online search tool.

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How And How Much Should I Feed My Newborn

For women who wish to breastfeed and are able, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months, but that’s not always possible. Whether youre nursing, feeding your baby formula or a combination, talking to your pediatrician is important to make sure your baby is getting enough to eat.

Its also important to discuss how to recognize cues of hunger and satiety, whether you should be feeding on demand or following a schedule, and the normal amount of eating depending on your babys size and age.

Often families feel the more a baby eats the better, and every time they fuss or cry it must mean they are hungry. That is not always true. Babies need enough nutrition to grow, but just like everyone, they can eat too much. Signs of eating too much include frequent or large amounts of spit up, rapid weight gain and being fussy after feeding. Talk to your doctor about the right amount of feedings for your baby. Also, consider talking to your doctor before changing babys formula. Usually, if you are thinking about changing, it is because something is not going smoothly and your doctor will want to know what that is.

Why Its Not Safe For Visitors To See A Newborn Sooner

Earwax buildup

Forget about the common cold. A major concern is a potential infection that can be passed onto your infant, Dr. Schaffner explains. âWe know that infants are very vulnerable to whooping cough, and before they can be vaccinated themselves, the way it finds newborns is if family members bring it into the home,â Dr. Schaffner explains. âSo if someone wants to see the baby, they have to have a recent TDaP vaccine, and absolutely no one should get near the baby if they havenât been vaccinated against Covid.â Dr. Alexander adds: âVery serious infections such as sepsis or meningitis are possible during the first few months of life. It would be best for visitors to wait until the baby is at least two months old.â

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What Is The Office Culture And Communication Stye

Do the physician and their staff seem friendly, patient, and compassionate? Does the physician seem genuinely interested in your child and their health? Do they take and return phone calls in a timely fashion? Is a nurse or coordinator available by phone or email to answer questions? The staff should communicate and explain health concerns in a way that you can understand and you shouldnt feel rushed during appointments.

Listen to your instincts. If you dont feel comfortable, look elsewhere. No one knows what is best for your family better than you.

Questions To Ask My Friends And Relatives About Their Pediatrician:

  • Do you feel rushed at your appointments?
  • Are all your questions and concerns addressed by your pediatrician?
  • Do your children like their pediatrician?
  • How are emergencies handled on the weekend or after hours?
  • Does the pediatrician include you in the decision-making process?
  • Does your pediatrician explain the side effects and risks of various medications?
  • Does your pediatrician respect your opinion? For example, how does your pediatrician respond if you choose not to vaccinate your child?

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Choosing A Pediatrician For Your New Baby

From the day you learn you’re pregnant, you make decisions that last your child’s lifetime like the name you choose for your baby. To give your newborn the healthiest possible start, you’ll want to find a pediatrician to care for your child from their first wellness visit through the teen years. Here are tips on how to find that doctor.

How Do I Choose Between A Pediatrician And A Family Doctor

How can parents choose a pediatrician?

The most obvious difference between a pediatrician and a family doctor is that pediatricians specialize in caring for babies, children, and teens, while family doctors also treat adults in the family.

For some people, its important for everyone in the family to be treated by the same doctor. Others might prefer a doctor who focuses on caring for children only.

This decision is ultimately a personal one. It may come down to which doctor makes you feel most comfortable.

Whether youre looking for a pediatrician or a family doctor, its perfectly fine to interview doctors before you decide.

According to doctors at the Cleveland Clinic, these are some questions you should consider when choosing a pediatrician:

  • What are their office hours?
  • How do I reach them if my baby has an emergency after hours?
  • What hospital are they affiliated with?
  • How is billing handled?
  • Will my child get to see the same doctor every visit?
  • How friendly is the staff?

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How To Choose The Best Pediatrician For Your Child

Parents seem to go to a lot of different extremes when choosing a pediatrician. Some simply choose the pediatrician on call in the hospital when their baby is born or pick a doctor randomly from a list in the phone book or their insurance directory.

Others do detailed research and conduct an interview asking their potential new pediatrician everything from where they went to medical school to what their scores were on their medical boards.

When choosing a pediatrician, make sure you like your new doctor, and see if you agree on important parenting topics, such as breastfeeding, discipline, and not overusing antibiotics, etc.

What Is A Pediatrician

A pediatrician, family medicine doctor or pediatric nurse practitioner can be your baby’s primary care provider. Here, we are focusing on pediatricians, who specialize in the care of babies, children and teens.

All medical doctors complete four years of medical school. To become specialized in pediatrics, they complete three additional years of training. Most pediatricians then become board-certified by passing a comprehensive test from the American Board of Pediatrics.

Many pediatricians work together in a group practice with other pediatricians and pediatric nurse practitioners, who are nurses with additional training in pediatric care. Other members of the healthcare team include nurses, laboratory technicians and administrative staff who handle scheduling and billing.

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Start Your Search Early

While expecting parents can spend hours researching the perfect crib, stroller and high chair, they often spend less time choosing their childs doctor. As with any decision, its best to start early. Most hospitals will ask for the name of your pediatrician when youre admitted to deliver your baby, so give yourself plenty of time, remembering that some babies arrive early.

The Best Pediatrician Is The Right Pediatrician For Your Family

Top 15 Interview Questions for Pediatricians You Need to Ask

The good news is that there are quality doctors out there to choose from. Once you’re satisfied with a pediatrician’s merit, take the time to find someone you connect with and explore any conveniences their clinic offers. Your child’s doctor should be someone you trust and feel comfortable discussing questions and issues with. Talking with other parents about their experiences and recommendations is a huge help.

There is a night and day difference between the experiences of parents who love versus those who don’t like their pediatrician. If you start with one doctor and aren’t happy, don’t be afraid to try others to find a better fit for your family. Having a trusted partner in your child’s health through the years is priceless.

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When Should I Start Looking For A Pediatrician

It’s a good idea to start looking for a doctor about 3 months before your baby is due. Ask for recommendations from relatives, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and doctors you know. Then, check your insurance company’s website to see if the doctors are in your plan.

If you’re new to an area, start by searching for pediatricians on your insurance company’s website or try the American Academy of Pediatrics Find a Pediatrician tool.

Look at online reviews and ratings, but proceed with caution. Like all online sites, the reviewers’ opinions and expectations may differ from yours. Make sure the review site only allows feedback from actual patients.

Of course, doctors aren’t the only people in a pediatrics office who care for children. Nurse practitioners and physician assistants also see young patients. They are trained to give shots, check kids for health problems, prescribe medicines and do many of the things doctors can do.

How To Choose The Right Pediatrician

Take the time to select the right clinician for your family. Trust us, its more important than picking the perfect stroller. Here are some tips to help you get started.

The final months of pregnancy are marked by a flurry of preparation: setting up a nursery, packing a hospital bag and deciding on baby names. Its also the perfect time to choose your childs pediatrician.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents take their baby in for at least seven well-child visits during their first year of life, but ear infections, fevers, rashes and other unexpected baby maladies could make visits to the doctor more frequent. After that first year, pediatricians guide parents on topics ranging from potty training to tantrums to school performance and more. All of this face-time makes choosing the right doctor among the most important decisions new parents make, especially during a global pandemic when parents often turn to primary care providers with their questions. But with almost 60,000 practicing general pediatricians in the United States alone, finding the best doctor for your family can be a stressful process.

We spoke with pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists, reviewed national guidelines, and compiled the research to help you through this process. As professors of pediatrics and mothers of young children ourselves, we also relied on our own experiences when creating this guide.

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Getting To Know Your Physician

What to ask at a first meeting

At your first consultation, its important to determine whether you feel confident having this doctor take care of your baby. You may find it helpful to talk with the pediatrician about practical and philosophical concerns you may have about your babys care. Remember, you have a choice in selecting your childs pediatrician, and you may find it helpful to visit more than one office or physician. Below are considerations, topics and questions you may want to discuss.

Practicalities of care

How do the office staff and nurses treat you? The pediatrician and staff should follow the no-question-is-stupid philosophy. These are the people you will turn to for assistance the first time your baby develops a rash, gets a fever or takes a tumble, and you want to be confident that your questions and concerns will be addressed by professionals with whom you can develop a caring relationship.

Other thoughts to consider:

  • Who will see your baby for his or her first checkup in the hospital?
  • When will your babys next exams take place?
  • What is the typical schedule of visits?

Philosophy of care and personal concerns

Is That Supposed To Be In My Baby’s Diaper

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Newborn diapers can look different day to day stool frequency, color and consistency will change as your babys eating changes in those first few days. It will also depend on whether your newborn is drinking breast milk or formula, but once a baby is feeding regularly, they should be gifting you with around eight to ten wet diapers a day.

Ask your pediatrician about the frequency, color and consistency of your newborns poops, especially if your baby doesn’t seem to be producing many wet diapers. While there can be many acceptable shades, be sure to tell your pediatrician if you see stool that is red, black, or white, since these could signal a medical issue in rare cases.

Many families also notice that after a few weeks it seems as though the baby strains or has to push hard to poop. Sometimes, they even make grunting noises and turn red in the face. This is very common and normal. Your baby is teaching themselves how to poop. They need to learn what muscle to use and how to respond to the feeling of having to poop. As long as once the poop comes out is it soft and the usual color, all is well. If you have concerns about this, call your doctor.

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What Should I Expect From A Pediatric Visit

Weve built a positive and collaborative wellness home for you and your family. When you walk into our office, youll be greeted by one of our friendly team members, who can help you coordinate your familys healthcare, including your in-office visits, camp or school physicals, and specialist referrals. Youll spend your entire visit with a board-certified pediatrician or a family provider who can care for your entire family.

Our providers are eager to build strong and lasting relationships with their patients. They want you to feel comfortable sharing your parenting experiences during visits, emailing them questions, and calling our practice for questions about something as sudden as a fever or as routine as a well check.

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