Kids Health Watch is brought to you by our friends and Children’s Medical Group
All parents wish to be an effective advocate for their child, and all of us, whether consciously or unconsciously, begin advocating for our child from the moment of birth. What can that mean from a pediatrician’s view point, and how can we help you in your role as an advocate for our mutual goal of your child’s good health?
As a parent, you have probably had at least one if not more instances where you walked away wondering if you made the right decision for your child, or maybe you should have asked a few more questions. It’s normal to have those feelings. Part of a pediatrician’s role is to give you the confidence to make sure you are making the right decision for your child, and to educate you on any potential decisions that might come along in the future.
If you are unsure of an answer, need clarification, or have more questions, never hesitate to speak up. We are all human, including your pediatrician. Sometimes we get overwhelmed with work, and sometimes we can move through things quickly without explaining them to your satisfaction. It’s okay to ask us to slow down, or to clarify something you don’t understand. We don’t mind. Most of us are also parents and understand the anxiety that can come with parenthood.
If you feel like you might need more time to think about your questions, or would like more time for something to be explained to you and there isn’t enough time in the schedule that day, then it’s okay to ask for another appointment for another day, or at a time in the day that works better for a longer visit. Your pediatrician may even offer to call at a later time to clear up some questions. Additionally, a great resource for answers to a variety of your questions as a parent is healthychildren.org.
As the parent, you have the ultimate say in your child’s healthcare. Your pediatrician is the medical expert for diagnosing and treatment, but you have the most thorough understanding of your child. You know your child better than anyone else, and it is critical that you have a voice in your child’s care.
Don’t forget that you and your pediatrician have the same ultimate goal: your child’s wellbeing!