The most direct and simplest definition of pediatrics is the field of medical care and practice that is dedicated to seeing a child grow physically and emotionally healthy. Starting from the age of 1 day and looking forward to the development of the child in adulthood, pediatrics is one of the most complicated fields of medicine because children always grow and change. Every parent knows that every child has their own set of problems and challenges that need to be addressed. This reality is why your pediatrician, the doctor who practices pediatrics, should be one of the parents’ best friends.
The short list
There are numerous specialties in pediatrics. Here is a short list of the types of specialists you will most commonly encounter as your child develops.
Medicine for adolescents and young adults – This specialty generally involves the treatment of children in the first and second adolescence.
Allergy and Immunology: Treats children who have allergies or allergic conditions and those who have asthma or problems with their immune system.
Emergency medicine or intensive care: technically these are two separate specialties, but when the child comes to the emergency room, the differences probably don’t matter much to you.
Developmental medicine – Here the focus is on the emotional and intellectual development of the child. Behavioral problems, problems with school academics and social interaction are some examples of what this area specializes in.
Endocrinology – With this specialty, think about hormones. There are numerous developmental problems associated with unbalanced hormones in a child. Ask any parent who has a teenager.
General Pediatrics – As the name of the specialty states, these pediatricians are trained to address a wide variety of the most common physical and emotional issues.
Hospital medicine – Nobody likes being sick, and even more so no child likes being and being treated in hospital. Pediatricians with this specialty spend most of their time training in hospitals.
Infectious diseases and global health – Although vaccinations against measles, mumps and chickenpox significantly reduce the possibility of infectious diseases spreading, influenza, the common cold and MRSA are diseases that can potentially affect the child.
Nutrition – There are more connections between poor diet and childhood diseases and diseases than you can imagine. Although not all children should consult a pediatric nutritionist, it is wise to make an appointment with one at various stages of the child’s development.
As you can see from The Short List, you may need to consult different specialists for your child depending on the specific problems that occur during their development. In general, a pediatrician will perform common tasks such as doing annual exercise, treating minor injuries and illnesses such as a sod or flu, and making observations about the child’s emotional development. If any condition is of particular concern to the pediatrician, you may wish to consult a specialist for further testing and diagnosis. Of course, I am able to write prescriptions and order additional tests when needed.
Perhaps the most important aspect of the relationship between you and a pediatrician is the relationship between your child and the pediatrician. Due to the wide range of services offered by a pediatrician, it is best that your child get along easily with them. This builds confidence in the doctor from the child. Since it is not advisable to change pediatricians, especially between the age of birth and seven years, the happier the child is with the pediatrician, the better. Open communication is essential in any doctor-patient relationship and is even more critical when children are involved.