Pediatricians and pediatric APRNs are specially trained providers who will help you manage the health of your child, including physical and behavioral health issues. They're trained to diagnose and treat childhood illnesses, from minor health problems to serious diseases, and will see your child many times from birth to age 2 and once a year from ages 2 to 5 for "well-child visits." After age 5, your pediatric provider will likely continue to see your child every year for annual checkups. They're also the first person to call whenever your child is sick.
The early years of a child’s life are very important for his or her health and development. Healthy development means that children of all abilities, including those with special health care needs, are able to grow up where their social, emotional and educational needs are met. Having a safe and loving home and spending time with family―playing, singing, reading, and talking―are very important. Proper nutrition, exercise, and sleep also can make a big difference.
Effective Parenting Practices
Parenting takes many different forms. However, some positive parenting practices work well across diverse families and in diverse settings when providing the care that children need to be happy and healthy, and to grow and develop well. A recent report looked at the evidence in scientific publications for what works, and found these key ways that parents can support their child’s healthy development:
- Responding to children in a predictable way
- Showing warmth and sensitivity
- Having routines and household rules
- Sharing books and talking with children
- Supporting health and safety
- Using appropriate discipline without harshness
Parents who use these practices can help their child stay healthy, be safe, and be successful in many areas—emotional, behavioral, cognitive, and social.
Learn more about positive parenting at:
- Positive Parenting Tips
- Practice Parenting Skills
- Essentials for Parenting Toddlers and Preschoolers