What Is a Well-Child Visit?

At a well-child visit, your child’s doctor may:

  • Weigh, measure, and check your child’s growth

  • Give your child shots to prevent disease

  • Test your child for illnesses

  • Check your child’s sight, hearing, and teeth

  • Discuss child safety, eating, and development

  • Answer questions you have about your child’s health.

When you bring a baby to well-child visits, you might want to take a friend or family member. It will be easier to talk to the doctor if someone can help you with your baby.

Parents should take their babies for well-child visits at these ages:

2 to 4 days 9 months
1 month

12 months

2 months 15 months
4 months 18 months
6 months  24 months (2 years)

After your child is 2 years old, schedule a well-child visit once a year.

Children are sometimes scared of going to the doctor. But you can prepare your child for a doctor’s visit. Here’s how:

  • Tell your child, or show on a toy, what will happen at the doctor’s office.

  • Let your child play with medical toys, such as a toy thermometer.

  • Be honest if something, such as a shot, will hurt. But talking too much about pain is scary. So keep your talk short. Tell your child it will only hurt for a little while.

  • Teach your child to relax by breathing slowly or counting. Try counting make-believe animals while getting a shot.

  • Tell your child you will stay in the doctor’s office the whole time. Then do it.

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