Anyone skip well baby visits? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 09:16 AM - Thread Starter
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We went to our 2 day, 1 week, 2 week and 2 month well baby visits. I have a 4 month visit scheduled but really don't want to go. Anyone else think it's stupid to take a healthy baby to a place with a bunch of sick kids? The last time some kid was hacking his brains out. We waited outside. I can weigh my LO at home, measure her and plot it on the graph which is pretty much all they do. 

 

Just curious.


 
 
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#2 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 09:25 AM
 
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We don't, for a couple of reasons. One, my pediatrician is awesome and I love her (Dr. Lloyd at Catalina Pediatrics, if you're not happy with Julia's ped. winky.gif). Two, and this is a big one, I'm counting on her to notice if there is something developmentally going on that I don't have the training to know about. For example, a friend of mine's infant son seemed to maybe have a little trouble turning his head to the right. He could do it, but didn't prefer to. It turned out that he had torticollis, and it was caught early enough that it was never a big deal. Same thing with another friend whose baby had hip dysplasia. And then, for us, there is Cecilia's anemia, which was diagnosed at her 9 month WBV. It's the pediatrician's job to make sure that the baby is developing well beyond just height and weight and head size.


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#3 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Actually, Janel Lloyd is our pediatrician! And I guess you are right, there are certainly things that I would not be able to catch. Thanks for the reality check! We will just continue to wait outside if there are a lot of sick kiddos there.

 

I'm glad to hear that you like Dr. Lloyd. I wasn't sure at first but liked her more and more at each visit. My not liking to take Julia to well baby visits had nothing to do with her personally.


 
 
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#4 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 09:58 AM
 
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I don't on a regular basis.  I kept up on all of them with DS1, most of them with DS2, and now with DS3 I'm like "oh, hey, you need a well baby..."  His first well baby visit was at 6 months, and my cool family doc said "You're an experienced mom, you know when something's wrong, I'm okay with not seeing him again until a year unless you think you need to bring him in."


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#5 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 10:07 AM
 
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Actually, Janel Lloyd is our pediatrician! And I guess you are right, there are certainly things that I would not be able to catch. Thanks for the reality check! We will just continue to wait outside if there are a lot of sick kiddos there.

 

I'm glad to hear that you like Dr. Lloyd. I wasn't sure at first but liked her more and more at each visit. My not liking to take Julia to well baby visits had nothing to do with her personally.


She's seriously the best! She always makes me feel completely at ease with our parenting choices, and I feel like that's so amazingly valuable, hearing the horror stories from some of my friends about how their peds make them feel. At the same practice, Dr. Ariana Foster is also amazing, if you ever find you need to see someone else for some reason. She's the one who saw us in the hospital when Cece was born, when Dr. Lloyd was out of town. She also made me feel totally comfortable about being an AP mom. smile.gif


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#6 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 11:34 AM
 
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We skip them. We don't vax. We went at 2mo just to go. It was the first (and only) doc visit she's had. She was born at home and my midwife did the checks up to 6 weeks. I am getting new health insurance for her and moving to a PPO next month so we will probably take her somewhere around 6-7 months just to meet the doctor we will choose so that if we want to call because of an issue they will at least have met us once. Then we will probably go once a year just to say hi (if it ever came up I wouldn't want to seem medically negligent), assuming there's no reason to go because of sickness. I really don't see the point of subjecting her to sick kids just to get weighed and measured. If there was something developmentally concerning then I would ask questions and get it checked out.  If she gets sick with something we can't treat naturally then we can have the doc check her heart/lungs at that time, otherwise we won't be going.

 

 


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#7 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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We don't vax.

We aren't vaxxing either.

 

 

 

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Then we will probably go once a year just to say hi (if it ever came up I wouldn't want to seem medically negligent)

This thought crossed my mind, especially since we aren't vaccinating right now and most likely never will. At least nobody can say that I was negligent in taking my child to the doctor's when I'm supposed to.

 

I can't imagine always going every two months, though. At what age do well baby visits stop being so often and switch to a once a year check up?


 
 
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#8 of 23 Old 03-23-2011, 01:52 PM
 
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I can't imagine always going every two months, though. At what age do well baby visits stop being so often and switch to a once a year check up?

 

Generally after 2. They're not every 2 months forever, though. After 6 months the next one is 9 months, which is when Dr. Lloyd checks for anemia, then a year, 18 months, 2 years. There might or might not be a 15 month one in there too, not sure.


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#9 of 23 Old 04-09-2011, 10:25 AM
 
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Both of my girls have only been to their 2 week and 6 week checkups provided by my midwife.  They are currently 22 months and 3 months, and neither of them have ever been to a doctor for a well-baby or vaccs or for being sick..  I always figure, if they're healthy and growing, why bother? I never went to a doctor when I was a kid either, except for two times that I had bronchitis. :)

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#10 of 23 Old 04-09-2011, 10:35 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Cecilia's Mama View Post

We don't, for a couple of reasons. One, my pediatrician is awesome and I love her (Dr. Lloyd at Catalina Pediatrics, if you're not happy with Julia's ped. winky.gif). Two, and this is a big one, I'm counting on her to notice if there is something developmentally going on that I don't have the training to know about. For example, a friend of mine's infant son seemed to maybe have a little trouble turning his head to the right. He could do it, but didn't prefer to. It turned out that he had torticollis, and it was caught early enough that it was never a big deal. Same thing with another friend whose baby had hip dysplasia. And then, for us, there is Cecilia's anemia, which was diagnosed at her 9 month WBV. It's the pediatrician's job to make sure that the baby is developing well beyond just height and weight and head size.

These reasons also are ones that we don't skip. We know a family whose 2YO has some serious delays. She doesn't speak, doesn't communicate in any way, doesn't make repetitive syllables even, makes no eye contact, doesn't seem to know us though we see her 2-3 times per week. Something clearly is wrong with her. Mom had no prenatal visits, and the kids have no well-baby visits. The parents talk about how difficult life is with her, and I really think that a professional to say, "you know, she's 2 1/2 and not even making consonant sounds. Let's find out why" is much easier than one of us or (as has happened to them) a set of grandparents saying, "are you sure everything's okay with her?"


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#11 of 23 Old 04-09-2011, 10:44 AM
 
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We skip it too, just do a newborn check and 1 month, with our first we went til 6 months but it really was useless (counterproductive to health even, with bad nutritional advice, sick kids around, and attempts to vaccinate) and expensive. Never had an injury or illness that needed medical attention yet and my boys are 5 and 2 years. Once the eldest did get an x-ray the ped's office set up for us, turned out he'd just bruised a bone and didn't need any help though. If they couldn't keep down fluids from illness, needed stitches or a cast, needed antibiotics, anything like that, then the doctor would be useful.

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#12 of 23 Old 04-09-2011, 10:58 AM
 
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if you skip it, do you mind telling me how you measure head circumference (where do you measure exactly?), and what chart do you go by?

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#13 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 06:51 AM
 
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Just wanted to say that I went to the 2 month well baby visit when she was about 2 months and a week (my midwife did check ups until 8 weeks) and it was a pointless visit. She measured my DD at 26 inches when just a week earlier she had been measured at 25 inches. When I got home I re-measured her at 25 inches. I check her on these things every week just because I'm curious and they couldn't even get it right at a doctor's office! Other than the height and weight, the doctor did nothing but look in her ears and scold me for delaying vaccinations. I'm not totally against them, just want to wait a bit. The doctor tried telling me that I don't "live in a bubble" and that my DD could get sick. When that didn't work on me she said I just couldn't bring her back to the office because they have "lots of sick children here" and my DD would make them even more ill. Unless she was coming in for the vaccinations, then she could come back. Ugh, needless to say I'm skipping well baby visits until we move and can find a better pediatrician. Good luck with your decision!


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#14 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 07:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Emelee, it definitely sounds like you need a new pediatrician! 

 

Let's see, at our 2 month visit the nurse (or whatever she is) measured height, weight and head. The pediatrician checked her eyes and ears. She listened to her chest and back. She checked her belly and back, arms and legs for any rash or skin issues. She checked her head for flat spots. She checked her mouth for thrush. She watched Julia turn her head. She pushed on her abdomen. She moved her legs around to check her hips. She took a peek at her belly button. She also undid her diaper to check her out down there, too. I also had to fill out the development worksheet and she went through that with me, asking a few questions.

 

We did have to sign the form for refusing vaccines, but it was very basic and I crossed one thing out and asked for a copy of it. Our pediatrician didn't make me feel bad at all. She also didn't mind that we cosleep and is very supportive of breast feeding. She always offers the use of the breastfeeding room before the drive home.

 

Looking back at my original post, I realize that the pediatrician did much more than I mentioned.

 

I kept our 4 month appointment. We go at the end of April.


 
 
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#15 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 09:08 AM
 
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my peds has a differnt waiting room for WBV so we dont sit around with the sick kids, i would not take my small babies if they didn't do something like that.  otherwise i do take them for exactly what folks have said, they can catch things that i would not know were strange.


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#16 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 09:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Ours has one big waiting room. One side is for sick kids, one for well. But parents don't pay attention to their sicks kids who come wandering over to the well child side!


 
 
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#17 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 09:41 AM
 
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I really believe in the WBV system, so I definitely bring Daniel in. I worked really hard when I was pregnant finding a ped that I felt really comfortable with and that I felt represented my attitude towards health. She listens to anything I have to say, gives me great advice on things that might have been stressing me out and tends to "neutralize" information that I get online or in books. When Daniel was a newborn, she set me up with a million people to help me get breastfeeding when I was struggling and really pushed it with me. When it didn't work out because I wasn't getting enough milk after a breast reduction, she comisserated with me and helped me work out a plan. Daniel has always been a small kid and a little eater, and that always worried me. When I would read that a X month old should be eating X amount of milk every day it would stress me out because he wasn't gaining so quickly, but she always helped me relax and said basically that babies don't starve as long as you feed them on demand. A lot of other doctors might have wanted me to push food on him when he wasn't ready, or would have encouraged me to CIO when he wasn't sleeping the night at X months, but she didn't. Sure, every once in a while she says something that I don't totally agree with, but that's okay, I just don't do it.

 

I feel like if you're struggling with your WBV, you should find another doctor who you feel comfortable. When I was pregnant and thinking about vax, we had a frank conversation about it and she gave me her opinion and ultimately I made my own decision. If I had decided not to vax, I would have known she disagreed with the choice, but that she would see my baby anyway. I think most doctors are pro vax, but if you feel strongly about not vaxing, you just say no thank you and leave.


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#18 of 23 Old 04-10-2011, 09:44 AM
 
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Also, I wanted to say that when Daniel was really tiny I brought him in our carseat or Moby and never took him out in the waiting room unless I absolutely had to. Now that he's mobile, I keep him in the sroller (we're experiencing Ergo resistance) so he's not touching the toys or the seats or whatever. I'm very careful not to touch anything either. So far, we haven't gotten sick from the doctors.


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#19 of 23 Old 04-15-2011, 07:27 PM
 
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With DS1 I totally fell off the wagon, mainly because I was half-hearted in wanting to vax.  With DS2, I decided to "Dr Sears It" and so we're on the WBV schedule. 

 

Ironically, I do bring in the kids for sick visits quite a bit.  We've needed a number of ABX to get through the last couple of seasons.  We are in a private school community and it's just so darn germy.

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#20 of 23 Old 04-15-2011, 07:45 PM
 
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We went to all the WBVs up until the last one at 12 months. We missed that one b/c the doctor didn't show up! duh.gif We've since moved and are about to move again, so once we get to our new place the hunt is on for a new pediatrician! We're not vaxing so I'm a little apprehensive about going through the whole process of finding a new doc again. It should be lots of fun... not. haha

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#21 of 23 Old 04-16-2011, 11:48 AM
 
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I skip them.  My 3 year old went to a 6 week check and I thought it was pointless, so he hasn't seen a Dr. for a check up since.  My 6 month old last saw a Dr. when she was born.  We won't be doing any visits with her unless she is sick.  Also, the Dr. situation where we live is incredibly pathetic and finding not only a Dr. to see you, let alone one you like is extremely hard.  Had I a family doc I clicked with, I would have taken my 6 month old for a 6 week check.  Not for any reason other than just to do it.  But I still wouldn't have done any more visits even if I had a great Dr.


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#22 of 23 Old 04-16-2011, 12:13 PM
 
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We do the checkups.  If something serious were to happen, or my baby became ill, I'd want to have a relationship with his doctor.  I certainly wouldn't want to be explaining myself and why we didn't do the recommended visits while I was worried about my baby.  Also, I just think it's a matter of respect.  If I go to the trouble of finding and hiring a doctor, and he/she wants us to follow a particular visit schedule - why would I not do it?  I don't want him/her to think I'm non compliant and just trying to be contrary, or that I don't respect his opinion.  I want him to trust me as a mom - not be exasperated with me.   Some pediatricians have separate waiting rooms for well and sick children.  I think that's a great idea.  

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#23 of 23 Old 04-17-2011, 07:09 PM
 
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Dr. Wootan's book "Take Charge of Your Child's Health: A Guide to Recognizing Symptoms and Treating Minor Illnesses at Home"  (Wootan, George MD and Sarah Verney, 1992. revised in 2000) devotes 5 chapters on how to do a basic well-child check up at home.

 

To measure the head, you wrap the measuring tape around the middle of the forehead, to the back/bottom part of the head- the part where the spine meets the head, called the "Occipital condyle". In his words: "As a general rule of thumb, the head measurement should be roughly equal to that of the circumference of the chest (measured at the nipple line) for the first 18 months of life."

 

Dr. Wootan has 11 children himself (!). I highly recommend his book if you are wary of doctors, or think well baby checkups are pointless; it's a GREAT resource.

 

We haven't taken 13 week DD to a doc yet, although I might in a month or so, just to say we did, and establish a relationship with the doc just in case. When I go, I'll have a medical history/file for the doc to look at already, as I'm doing "checkups" for DD each week (we bought a stethoscope, scale, and are getting an otoscope soon, per Dr. Wootan's suggestions).

 

The social pressure to take babies to the doc are great, but it's important to realize that our children's health is in our hands. We observe our babies continually, and know our babies best, and with a little bit of knowledge, we will know if something is not right.

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