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Staying healthy for children

Staying healthy for infants and toddlers

staying-healthy-children

In the months from birth to age two, your baby is growing, changing and learning at an amazing rate. It is important that babies and children have regular medical checkups.

Your doctor will check to make sure your baby is healthy. The doctor will check your child’s height and weight and look for any signs of developing problems. Your baby will also get immunizations (shots). These help protect against serious childhood illnesses. If your baby is not growing as expected or has other special health care needs, the doctor can suggest treatment.

Well-baby checkups and shots are just as important as taking your baby to the doctor when your baby is sick. Finding a health problem early may keep your baby from developing more serious problems later.

Where to learn more

Vaccinations and immunizations

Dental care

Health and wellness

Staying healthy for children

Ages 2 – 5

Make sure your child gets regular well-child checkups and immunizations (shots). As your child spends more time outside the home, there’s more risk of getting sick from illnesses like the flu. You can help your child stay well by keeping up with shots and teaching good health habits.

You can do fun things together like reading to your child about staying healthy. Plan an hour or more of physical activity each day. As your child gets more active, there’s also more risk of accidents. Learn how to make your home and car safe for your busy preschooler.

It’s also time to get your child ready for school. Your child must have a physical exam and be up to date on shots to start preschool or elementary school. Work with your child’s doctor to find any vision, hearing or speech problems or other special health care needs. This will help your child get a good start in school and be ready to learn!

Ages 5 – 10

In these years, school becomes a bigger part of your child’s life. It’s important to have regular checkups and booster shots. Changes in vision or hearing can happen at any age. Your child should get regular screenings to make sure your child can hear the teacher and see the blackboard. Your child’s doctor or nurse will do these tests and give shots during well-child checkups.

Sitting too much at school and home can lead to obesity and other health problems. More than 18% of children and adolescents face obesity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It’s best for children to eat a healthy diet and get 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Try making it family time. Join your child in biking, basketball, roller-skating, swimming or just going for a brisk walk together. You will both be healthier if you do.

Where to learn more

Vaccinations and immunizations

Medical care

Dental care

Resources for families

Staying healthy for preteens and teens

Your child is growing up and becoming more independent and responsible! But parents still need to help their older children get medical care and make healthy choices.

Some preteens and teenagers act in risky ways. For example, 8 out of 10 adult smokers started before they were 18. Teenagers don’t know how addictive smoking really is. With smoking and other unhealthy choices, teens don’t always know they are taking risks.

An important part of helping your older children make healthy choices is talking to them. Talking to your child about relationships, the internet, alcohol, tobacco, driving, drugs and other difficult subjects will help your child become informed and make better choices. Many children have fears and anxieties or feel sad and hopeless from time to time. Talk openly with your child about emotional health and depression and listen to their concerns.

Where to learn more

Vaccinations and immunizations

Medical care

Dental care

Growing up

Resources for teens and parents

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