Well baby visits - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 03:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone not do well baby visits? I've been reading a book by Dr. Mendelsohn and he says they're not necessary. So I'm just wondering what all you mamas out there do. Thanks!

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#2 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 03:25 PM
 
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If you search WBV in this section you'll get a ton of threads just like this. They get mixed reviews. Some will tell you that they are NOT necessary and just an excuse to push vaxes. Some will tell you that they are totally necessary because they know someone that caught a problem early while going.

Personally, it's up to you. We choose not to do them for a variety of reasons. We've never had any problems.

Kas (24), Helpmeet to Stefan (25), Mom to Franklin Gaudelio 4/15/09, Jonathan Boswell 1/2/11
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#3 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 04:15 PM
 
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We did a few: the next day after the hospital (to check bilirubin babe was jaundiced), 2 weeks, 2 months and 4 months. DS is now 7 months old . . .and we haven't had a visit in 3 months.

For us, I like at least having a relationship with a ped (or family doc, etc), in the event DS is ever sick, the doc knows us, knows we don't vax, and we can get straight to the real issue - DS being sick - without so much of the initial visit ?s. I mean, there are always ?s, but there are fewer when you are an established patient.

Are they really, really, necessary? my vote is no, but that is b/c I think, as a mom, you kind of know if something is off about your LO. but then, you may be so used to your LO, you just think what they are doing is normal . . .up to you.

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#4 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 04:48 PM
 
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i don't do them. well, i did a one week to check on jaundice and then my midwife checked her and weighed her at my 6-week PP checkup. other than that, my DD has never been to the doc. we have a group of pediatricians that we go to in emergencies only, they know us because of my 3 year old. it's actually kind of funny because we only show up there if someone is very sick (so far only my DS) and they never seem to notice or mention how we never come in otherwise. they have never even commented on DS's lack of shots.

anyway, I weigh and measure my DD every month to make sure she's gaining and plot her weight and length on a chart to make sure she's still doing okay. I know she's meeting her milestones and don't need any feeding or sleep advice. if i was worried about something, i'd go. i think the only thing that might get missed if you didn't go could be hip problems, which need to be caught very early. if my baby had been breech or if we had a family history of hip dysplasia I would worry more about it.

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#5 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 10:09 PM
 
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We decided not to do them. We don't do vax and so I don't see them as necessary.
She went for the next day visit and the 6 wk one, but that's it.
I'll probably take her in again for a 6 month checkup to check her weight and stuff.

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#6 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 10:35 PM
 
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So far we haven't done any. DS is 3.5 months. The midwife checked him the day after birth, at 3 days, 1 week, 3 weeks, and 6 weeks.

We aren't vaxing yet (possibly not at all). I weigh and measure DS on a regular basis and make sure his growth is on course.
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#7 of 13 Old 06-22-2010, 11:06 PM
 
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We do them "on schedule" for a few reasons.

1. We have no copay or deductible for well baby checks, so it doesn't cost me anything except the time effort and energy to take the kids.

2. I like having a relationship with the dr so he and I know each other, so when there is an actual issue, we talk easily with each other. I respect him, he respects me. But that respect has been built slowly.

3. I like to have a record of my child when he is well, so if he is sick, I have a baseline to compare it to. For example, my middle son had rotavirus and lost a significant amount of weight very quickly. My ped was able to look up his last several weights and realize that he had lost over 10% body weight, and knew to act more decidedly in treating him. He also knew that my son being lethargic was VERY out of character for him, he had seen my son bouncing all over the office numerous times before. Without that personal knowledge, the dr may not have taken stock of my parental observations the same way he did his own.

4. There are some things that I do not know, and despite lots and lots of internet research, would not occur to me to research, so I would not note as a problem.

A few examples include:

A. Cardiac conditions. Not all show outward signs that are obvious. I have a stethoscope, but I can't tell the difference between a murmur and a mitral valve prolapse.

B. A Pediatrician caught my "lazy eye" very early and treatment was able to get started at only 6 months old. My parents had not noticed it yet. They say that it became much more obvious shortly after, so they would have taken me to the dr for it, but sometimes delays in identifying problems can be bad.

C. A Pediatrician caught my sister's joint hyperflexibility in her foot and my mom was able to get her into physical therapy. Most likely my mom would not have noticed it until my sister was delayed in standing or walking, but the ped checked for it at the 4 and 6 month well baby checks and made a referral.

D. A Pediatrician pointed out my older son's sacral dimple and ordered the appropriate tests for it. I have a sacral dimple, and had not thought it unusual, so I would not have done anything about it on my own.

Those are just a few.

Now, there are plenty of negatives to well baby checks. Yes, it is an opportunity to push vaccinations. You have to be certain of your stance on issues like that before going to the dr. There's a chance that a bad dr could retrace a foreskin, give bad breastfeeding advice, unwelcome parenting advice, etc. You should try to choose your ped carefully so as to avoid those issues, or be upfront by saying "I have done my research and have chosen this method" and make it clear that your choices are not up for discussion (cosleeping, extended/exclusive breastfeeding, whatever). There's a chance that your kid could get exposed to germs at the dr, but I don't worry about that since my kids are out in public all the time and germs just don't scare me.

So yes, there are some potential negatives. But I think that if you are secure enough in your parenting decisions, and you have a reasonable dr, then well baby visits can be helpful in many ways. At the very least, I don't believe that they're harmful, except in the examples I gave above.

Mommy to BigBoy Ian (3-17-05) ; LittleBoy Connor (3-3-07) (DiGeorge/VCFS):; BabyBoy Gavin (10-3-09) x3 AngelBaby (1-7-06)
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#8 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 10:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 2boyzmama View Post

Now, there are plenty of negatives to well baby checks. Yes, it is an opportunity to push vaccinations. You have to be certain of your stance on issues like that before going to the dr. There's a chance that a bad dr could retrace a foreskin, give bad breastfeeding advice, unwelcome parenting advice, etc. You should try to choose your ped carefully so as to avoid those issues, or be upfront by saying "I have done my research and have chosen this method" and make it clear that your choices are not up for discussion (cosleeping, extended/exclusive breastfeeding, whatever). There's a chance that your kid could get exposed to germs at the dr, but I don't worry about that since my kids are out in public all the time and germs just don't scare me.
.
The reason we don't go is we're military and we'd be going on base. (I told DH I want to switch DS's insurance so we can see civilian peds) A few things about THAT...

1) There's no guarantee that he'll get to see the same ped each time. When I went in for a knee problem I saw the first doc and then saw a totally different doc for the followup because the first guy didn't have anything available 3 weeks later. AND because there are so many people I don't have a "chart" so the second doc started from scratch and gave me a totally different diagnosis.

2) The military docs here are not accepting of crunchy...and I really don't feel like arguing every few months.

3) DH was telling me a coworker took their baby in (a couple of months old) and was told by the nurse, "If you breastfeed you have to get some liquid vitamins to give her." Coworker asked, "What if we did formula?" Answer, "Then you'd be okay and wouldn't have to." Thankfully the guy knows better and told DH, "Don't tell me that FORMULA is better for my child than BREASTMILK! That's crap." So that's the type of advice new parents are getting!

Kas (24), Helpmeet to Stefan (25), Mom to Franklin Gaudelio 4/15/09, Jonathan Boswell 1/2/11
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#9 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 10:44 AM
 
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We go to ours for a few reasons. For one, I am a first time mama, and I like to see the different milestones she's hit, and I like watching her growth on the chart. The biggest reason though is because I absolutely love Cecilia's pediatrician. She's very relaxed and laid back, she only works a couple of days a week so she can be home with her children the rest of the time. She is pro extended breast feeding, doesn't care what kind of schedule you vaccinate on, and is a complete AP mama herself, homebirths and all (jealous!). As a first time mama, having a pedi like her makes it so much easier to validate all the choices we make for Cecilia. "Our doctor said it's a great thing to do!" goes a long way with questioning inlaws!

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#10 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 12:16 PM
 
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We do vax, so we have to go anyway, but I like to go. We just went today, actually. I found the same thing about going in confident in your parenting decisions. Doc asked how babe is sleeping, I was honest and said she wasn't. She'll actually go to sleep in her crib if I rub her back, but still wakes up every 2 hours or so and must nurse. Doc said I would have to wean her off the patting if I want her to sleep, but I told her I won't just let her cry. She suggested little by little doing a bit less to sooth her, which is kind of my plan as long as she doesn't get too upset. I said I don't feel comfortable saying goodnight and closing the door until I can talk to her and know she understands. She said, "Yup, when she's 3, probably. See, I can tell you all these things, but there is no magic solution. I nursed mine through the night until she was 3." She said she couldn't even get her to fall asleep in her crib by patting her. I have a feeling she co-slept too, but I didn't go into how I bring dd in with me half-way through the night.

I also like to pick their brains. There are 6 different doctors in the office, and we are still getting to know them. I have one more to meet, but I have really loved all of them. The doc for her 6 mo appt was pro fluoride. He gave me a script, which I never filled. Today's doc gave me pros and cons for fluoride (including less decay, spots on teeth, that it's a toxic supstance, but we have other toxins in our bodies, but they aren't good at spitting until 6 yet you give them fluoride vitamins, etc.). She said she'd write the script and I should read the info out there and decide. She gave her LO fluoride about once a week. She also laughed saying that they say it isn't well absorbed with calcium, so you're not supposed to give it with milk. She said, at this age (9 mo), they are having BM all day long, so she's not sure how you're supposed to avoid that.

This way, I get to know who to request for which issue, and the fact that there are 6 means that they have tons of hours, including weekends. Everyone around here uses them because there isn't really a bad doc in the bunch. They were even respectful as I was deciding which vaxes to give when and I don't expect a problem when we delay MMR or chicken pox. I know there is one of them who won't prescribe anti-biotics without diagnostic testing to show they are needed. This is exactly what I need because I have had c.diff. My 6 yo still hasn't ever had anti-biotics.

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#11 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 12:20 PM
 
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AFWife-- the vitamin concern is probably vitamin D. I remember to give my LO baby D drops occasionally, but most Americans don't get enough vit D. Lots of Mothering mommas give vit. D or are tested themselves to make sure they are getting enough.

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#12 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 12:22 PM
 
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AFWife-- the vitamin concern is probably vitamin D. I remember to give my LO baby D drops occasionally, but most Americans don't get enough vit D. Lots of Mothering mommas give vit. D or are tested themselves to make sure they are getting enough.
That's what I thought but the doc was talking about a multivitamin.

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#13 of 13 Old 06-23-2010, 01:35 PM
 
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We don't vax but I do the Well Baby Visit's anyways.. I love my doctor and go for most of the same reasons that 2boyzmama does

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