Table of contents:
- What does a pediatrician do
- Up to what age do you serve
- When to make an appointment
- Routine consultations with the pediatrician
The pediatrician is a doctor specializing in the care of children from birth to adulthood, who has the general knowledge necessary to act in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases in this age group, such as colds, gastroenteritis and asthma.
The pediatric speci alty is also responsible for guiding vaccination, monitoring children's weight gain, growth and skills development. In addition, the pediatrician is important to guide the family and refer the child to other professionals whenever necessary so that they receive all the necessary support at each stage of life until adulthood.
The pediatrician's goal is to ensure that children develop to their full potential and become independent adults who are able to decide about their future.
What does a pediatrician do
Some conditions a pediatrician can treat include:
- Throat infections;
- Urinary infections;
- Asthma and bronchitis;
- Atopic dermatitis;
The pediatrician is also responsible for guiding babies' breastfeeding and introduction of new foods, consumption of infant formulas, assessing growth, development and vaccination.
The pediatrician often works together with different medical speci alties and he alth professionals such as speech therapists, psychologists and physiotherapists, coordinating the child's treatments.
Up to what age do you serve
The age at which pediatricians usually care is from birth to 21 years, so that the child's follow-up begins at birth and extends through childhood and adolescence to adulthood.
However, there are exceptions, such as children with special needs, and in these situations, continuity of care after age 21 may vary from one doctor to another.
When to make an appointment
It is important to consult a pediatrician in the presence of symptoms such as:
- High fever (above 38ºC), especially in babies;
- Wheezing in the chest, tiredness of breathing or very fast breathing;
- Excessive sleepiness or difficulty staying awake and unwillingness to play;
- Low urine;
- Difficulty feeding the child;
- Diarrhea or blood in stool;
- Bloody vomiting.
In these cases, it is important to see a pediatrician as soon as possible because these symptoms may indicate serious illnesses such as respiratory infections, asthma, gastroenteritis, or meningitis.
Routine consultations with the pediatrician
It is important to have a routine to take the child to the pediatrician, because it is this follow-up that allows evaluating their growth, development, clarifying doubts and guiding the family regarding care at each stage.
The frequency of routine consultations with the pediatrician usually varies according to age:
Babies from 0 to 2 years old
At this age, it is important to have at least one appointment within the first week after birth. After this period, it is recommended that up to 6 months of age the child goes to the pediatrician at least once a month and then has an appointment at 9 and another at 12 months of age.
After the first year of life, consultations usually take place at 15, 18 and 24 months of age.
Children from 2 to 4 years old
After completing 2 years of age, it is recommended to consult the pediatrician at least once every 6 months until the age of 4.
Children and teenagers from 4 to 19 years old
After the child turns 4 years old, consultations tend to occur at least once a year.