Health and Wellness: Pediatric
Why your child’s well-care visits are so important
Wellness programs, immunizations and managing chronic diseases are essential to your child’s health and quality of life, when they’re young and throughout their entire lifetime.
As with adults, annual well-care visits are an important part of your child’s health and wellness. Most importantly, they play a vital role in your pediatrician’s ability to gauge whether your child is hitting the appropriate benchmarks in growth and physical/cognitive development and is up-to-date on immunizations.
They’re also an opportunity for your child’s pediatrician to assess how he/she is developing emotionally and interacting with others, both in school and outside of the classroom. And as your child matures and develops a relationship with their pediatrician, he/she can ask questions about their own health and changes they are going through as they grow.
What happens during an annual exam
During your child’s annual well-visit, the pediatrician will weigh and measure your child, plotting the results on growth charts to see how he/she compares with others of the same age and gender. He/she will also take a medical and family history, perform a physical exam, take your child’s blood pressure and test vision and hearing. Additional tests (blood and urine) screenings may also be ordered.
Immunizations for children
For your child to stay healthy and protected from preventable diseases, we recommend the following immunizations:
- Hepatitis A and hepatitis B: protects against serious liver infections
- Rotavirus: protects against the most common cause of diarrhea and vomiting in infants and young children (and the most common cause of hospitalizations in young infants due to vomiting and diarrhea)
- DTaP: protects against diphtheria, tetanus (lockjaw) and pertussis (whooping cough)
- Hib: protects against Haemophilus influenzae type b (a cause of meningitis)
- Pneumococcal: protects against one of the most common causes of bacterial ear infections, pneumonia, bacterial meningitis and infections of the blood
- Polio: protects against a crippling viral disease that can cause paralysis
- Influenza: protects against the flu
- MMR: protects against measles, mumps and rubella (German measles)
- Varicella: protects against chickenpox and its many complications, including secondary skin infections and encephalitis (inflammation of the brain)
- Meningococcal: protects against very serious bacterial diseases that affect the blood, brain and spinal cord
- HPV (human papillomavirus): prevents viral infections in teens and adults that cause cancers of the mouth, throat, cervix and genitals, as well genital warts
CDC Recommended Immunization Schedule for Children 0-18 Years
For a comprehensive schedule of the CDC-recommended immunizations, vaccines and dosages your child should receive from birth to 18 years old, click on the blue bar below.
Boosters may be needed as your child grows older
Check with your pediatrician to make sure your child is up-to-date on his/her immunizations and receives the appropriate booster vaccines.
Chronic disease management
At Westchester Health, we understand that when your child has a chronic disease or disorder, it can be very stressful for the whole family. If you have a child with a serious health issue, we want you to know that we’re here for you, whenever you need us, with advice, medication, referrals, ongoing monitoring and any other support you may need.
To help us stay on top of any changes or developments in your child’s condition, we recommend that you and your child come in for regular office visits. During these visits, we will check on your child’s progress, look for any changes in his/her condition, make sure he/she is on track with medications and treatment, and possibly adjust the medication. If we feel your child should see a specialist, we’ll provide a referral and be an ongoing link between you and that expert.
We help you and your child manage the following chronic diseases and disorders:
- Celiac disease
- Cerebral palsy
- Cystic fibrosis
- Mental illness
- Sickle cell anemia
To learn more about chronic diseases
To read articles by the American Academy of Pediatrics on such topics as chronic disease and school, social difficulties for children with chronic illness, living with a chronic illness or disability, and more, please click here.
Count on us for information and advice to help your child grow up healthy and happy
You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Whether you’re a parent-to-be, a new parent or an experienced mom or dad with years of child-rearing under your belt, rest assured. At Westchester Health, we’ve got years and years of experience helping parents take care of their children, sick or well, newborns to young adults, and we're ready to help you with yours. For more information about our full range of pediatric services, click here.