Advertisement

How can routine health checkups now benefit my child later in life?

Identifying problems and medical conditions, both acute and chronic, is what your child’s doctor is trained to do. It’s also her job to instruct and inform you how to prevent many health problems from taking hold in the first place.

By establishing an ongoing relationship with your pediatrician, going for regular visits, and listening to her advice as your child grows, you greatly increase the chances that she will become the healthiest adult she can be.

But, you’re still in charge of the steps between visits. And, there’s so much you and your child can do together every day to prevent certain health conditions. The downside of this is that it’s tough to know where to start. Parents often tell me how overwhelmed they get with the dizzying amount of child health information and advice out there.

Your children look to you for guidance and support, so it makes sense that the responsibility of instilling in your child what you’ve learned at checkups goes to you. Although no parent wants to be a nag, kids need guidance and gentle reminders about rules, limits, and appropriate behaviors. Steering kids toward healthy habits and reinforcing these habits along the way will teach kids the principles of moderation, discretion, consistency, and self-discipline.

Over time, and with your help, your kids will develop their own sense of self-control and self-regulation, which will allow them to set healthy limits for themselves. These factors will go a long way in helping your kids avoid the avoidable and enjoy good health for years to come.

From Good Kids, Bad Habits: The RealAge Guide to Raising Healthy Children by Jennifer Trachtenberg.

Take the RealAge Test!

Good Kids, Bad Habits: The RealAge Guide to Raising Healthy Children

More About this Book

Good Kids, Bad Habits: The RealAge Guide to Raising Healthy Children

When kids start going on TV binges or devouring fistfuls of cookies, it's easy to say, "They'll grow out of it." More likely, they're acquiring bad habits that could lead to childhood obesity and...

Keeping up with your child's routine health visits will allow your pediatrician to stay up to date with your child’s development. It also helps the pediatrician to note any health concerns. During these visits, your child's pediatrician will discuss normal child development so that you can know what to expect and spot issues early. Prevention is often the best medicine, and maintaining good, routine pediatric care will allow you and your pediatrician to address concerns early before they become a potential problem. Since immunizations are also usually given as part of routine checkups, keeping up with the checkup schedule will guarantee that your child stays protected from vaccine-preventable diseases.

This answer was created with the help of physicians at South Riding Pediatrics (www.SouthRidingPediatrics.com) and www.HealthyChildren.org

Continue Learning about Children's Health

Don’t Drop the Ball on Kids’ Snacks
Don’t Drop the Ball on Kids’ Snacks
It’s the start of your nine-year-old’s youth baseball season…He’s at bat—a swing and a miss. The 2-2 pitch hits the dirt and it gets by the catcher. ...
Read More
Can food coloring hurt my child?
Dr. Michael Roizen, MDDr. Michael Roizen, MD
Think twice about artificial dyes. One study shows that six artificial dyes may influence the hy...
More Answers
Skip the Masks, Sort the Candy and 7 Other Tricks for a Safe Halloween
Skip the Masks, Sort the Candy and 7 Other Tricks for a Safe HalloweenSkip the Masks, Sort the Candy and 7 Other Tricks for a Safe HalloweenSkip the Masks, Sort the Candy and 7 Other Tricks for a Safe HalloweenSkip the Masks, Sort the Candy and 7 Other Tricks for a Safe Halloween
Use these tips to avoid spooky holiday hazards on the trick-or-treat trail.
Start Slideshow
When It's Time to Check Your Child's Blood Pressure
When It's Time to Check Your Child's Blood Pressure

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.