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Medical Care and your 2 to 3 years old

Well-Child Visits

Regular well-child doctor exams are essential to keeping kids healthy and up-to-date with immunizations against many dangerous diseases.

A checkup also is a chance for you to talk with the doctor about developmental and safety issues and to ask any questions you have about your child's overall health.

What to Expect at the Doctor's Office

At a typical well-child visit, your doctor will weigh and measure your child to chart progress along a normal pattern of growth. The doctor will take a family and medical history and perform a complete physical examination.

If indicated or if it has not been done previously, your child may be screened for anemia, lead poisoning, tuberculosis, high cholesterol, or other specific conditions. The doctor will also ask about your child's eating habits.

Your child's teeth will be examined for tooth decay, abnormal tooth development, malocclusion (abnormal bite), dental injuries, and other problems. Although the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that all kids visit the dentist no later than age 3, many dentists and pediatricians feel kids should have a first exam between 2 and 3 years of age — earlier if problems are suspected.

At this age, most kids should have had these recommended immunizations:

  • four doses of DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis) vaccine
  • three doses of polio (IPV) vaccine
  • four doses of Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) vaccine
  • one dose of MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine
  • three doses of hepatitis B vaccine (hep B)
  • one dose of varicella (chickenpox) vaccine

Your child may also receive a flu shot every year, ideally before flu season begins.

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