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Make the Most of Your Child’s Visit to the Doctor (Ages 5 to 10)

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    Content last updated on:
    December 12, 2012

    The Basics

    Kids ages 5 to 10 need to go to the doctor or nurse for a “well-child visit” once a year. A well-child visit is when you take your child to the doctor for a full checkup, separate from any other visit for sickness or injury.

    At these visits, the doctor or nurse can help catch problems early, when they may be easier to treat. Make the most of your child’s visit by:

    • Gathering important information
    • Making a list of questions for the doctor
    • Knowing what to expect from the visit

    What about cost?
    Well-child visits are covered under the new Affordable Care Act. Depending on your insurance plan, your child may be able to get well-child checkups at no cost to you. Check with your insurance provider.

    The Basics

    How do I know if my child is growing and developing on schedule?
    Your child’s doctor or nurse can help you identify the signs (called developmental milestones) to look for in your child. This is an important part of the well-child visit.

    Some developmental milestones for children ages 5 to 10 include:

    • Developing skills for success in school (like sorting, counting, and language skills)
    • Taking over body care (like bathing, brushing teeth, and getting dressed)
    • Learning from mistakes or failures and trying again
    • Helping out with simple chores
    • Following family rules
    • Bringing friends home to play and getting invited to friends’ homes
    • Joining school clubs, teams, or other activities

    Learn more about the social and emotional development of kids ages 5 to 10 [PDF - 848 KB].

    Take Action!

    Take Action!

    Take these steps to help you and your child get the most out of visits to the doctor.

    Gather important information.
    Take any medical records you have to the appointment, including a record of shots your child has received. Make a list of any important changes in your child’s life since the last doctor’s visit, like:

    • A new brother or sister
    • A serious illness or death in the family
    • A new school or a move to a new neighborhood

    Use this tool to keep track of your child’s family health history.

    Take Action!

    Make a list of questions you want to ask the doctor.
    This visit is a great time to ask the doctor or nurse any questions related to:

    • A medical condition your child has (like asthma)
    • Changes in behavior or mood
    • Problems in school with learning or friends

    Some important questions include:

    • Is my child up-to-date on shots?
    • How can I make sure my child is getting enough physical activity?
    • Is my child at a healthy weight?

    Take a notepad and write down the answers so you remember them later.

    Take Action!

    Know what to expect.
    There are 2 main parts to each well-child visit. The doctor or nurse will ask you questions about your child and do a physical exam. The doctor or nurse will also use this information to update your child’s medical history.

    Questions the doctor or nurse may ask:

    • Behavior – Does your child have trouble following directions at home or at school?
    • Health – Does your child often complain of headaches or other pain?
    • School – Does your child look forward to going to school?
    • Activity – What does your child like to do after school?
    • Eating habits – What does your child eat on a normal day?
    • Family – Have there been any changes in your family since your last visit?

    Your answers to these questions will help the doctor or nurse make sure your child is healthy. Find out more about questions the doctor may ask:

    Take Action!

    The doctor or nurse will also check your child’s body.
    The doctor or nurse will:

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