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Routine Checkups

Routine well-child visits usually are scheduled several times during ages 12 to 24 months. These visits allow your child's doctor to keep a close eye on your child's general health and development. You also can discuss any concerns you have during these visits.

During the checkup, the doctor:

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  • Measures your child's weight and height and around his or her head (head circumference). These measurements are plotted on a growth chart to make sure your child is growing as expected.
  • Physically examines your child. Usually this includes looking at your child's eyes and ears, listening to his or her heart and lungs, checking the belly, and looking at the genital area. The doctor may also observe the way your child walks and test your child's reflexes.
  • Reviews your child's immunization record to make sure it is current. Your child generally receives one or more shots at well-child visits up to age 2. Bring your child's immunization record(What is a PDF document?) to each visit. It may help to learn some comforting techniques to help your child during immunizations.
  • Talks with your child, asking simple questions to test hearing and language abilities. For example, the doctor may ask your child to name or point to a body part.
  • Watches how your child interacts with you for clues about his or her emotional and social development. At ages 18 months and 24 months, the doctor may specifically check for signs of autism.

Routine checkups are a good time to ask any questions or to discuss growth and development issues. Also, talk about your child's new skills, such as walking, using a spoon, or combining words. It may help you to go to your child's checkup with a prepared list of questions(What is a PDF document?).

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 19, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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