Preparing for Baby's First Pediatrician Appointment
Baby’s first pediatrician appointment is a major milestone! This big outing usually takes place when the baby is just a few days old – likely a day or two after leaving the hospital - and it’s often the first time that new parents are taking their tiny baby out into the big, scary world.
Unsurprisingly, this tends to cause quite a bit of stress for the sleep-deprived family. That doesn’t need to be the case! With a bit of preplanning, it’s easy to ensure that the visit goes smoothly for everyone, including mom, dad, baby, and the pediatrician.
Here are 5 tips to ensure a smooth appointment:
#1: Know What to Expect
This is not the time or place for surprises. It’s best to go in knowing what to expect in terms of what the pediatrician will be measuring – usually length, weight, and head circumference – and what vaccines the baby may be getting. If you’re not sure, feel free to call the office ahead of your appointment to ask any questions that will put your mind at ease.
#2. Take Your Time
Parents are not particularly known for being on time. Since babies tend to spit-up or dirty their diapers at the most inconvenient times, this is not altogether surprising. That said, give yourself plenty of time to pack your things, to get yourself and your baby dressed, and to get into the car. You don’t want to feel rushed, so start getting ready to leave about 30-45 minutes before you actually need to be out the door.
#3. Stock the Necessities
This is likely the first time you get to use your cute new diaper bag! It should always be stocked with diapers, wipes, and an extra set of clothes for the baby. Consider an extra shirt for yourself as well, especially if you’re nursing! If your baby is drinking pumped milk or formula, make sure you have a bottle of that handy as well.
#4. Keep It Comfortable
The nurse will likely ask you to undress the baby to get the necessary measurements and to keep him or her undressed so that the pediatrician can easily do the full examination as well. The offices are sometimes very cold, so make sure that you have a soft, warm blanket easily accessible. A Baby Minky Blanket is the perfect way to make your baby feel cozy and secure.
#5. Bring in Reinforcements
If your baby is being fussy during the appointment, a good distraction can make all the difference in moving things along and getting you and your baby out the door. Whether it’s a favorite stuffed animal or an electronic toy that makes sounds and shines colorful lights, this is the time to pull out all the tricks.
While the first pediatrician appointment can feel daunting, parents often feel more confident with their new baby after successfully conquering this first outing. Remember that preparation is key, but you can do this!