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When many children know they are going to the doctor for a checkup, they become fearful. They may also be scared to go if they have to see their pediatrician for other reasons, but checkups frighten kids the most. They are afraid because they fear they could be separated from their parents at the visit.

Kids may also worry that the doctor will be mean or not handle them gently. Additionally, they fear that part of the examination could be painful. The biggest fear these kids have before seeing the pediatrician is the unknown. Therefore, parents must prepare their children for the checkup with their pediatrician.

Parents Should Help Their Kids Express Their Fears About The Pediatrician

Parents need to talk to their kids about their worries regarding the checkup. They should encourage them to express their fears so that the parents can give their children the reassurance they need. Let’s go over what parents should say to their kids who are nervous about going for a medical checkup.

Discuss Why The Kids Have To See The Pediatrician

Parents need to give them advance notice of the visit, so their kids are not in for an unpleasant surprise. And when they tell them that they have to see the doctor, they need to say it positively to help ease the child’s fears.

For example, the parents should tell the child that is about to go for a health checkup that the doctor wants to see how well they are growing. Kids love to grow, and they love the idea of getting older (and once they are adults, they will be kicking themselves for being in such a rush to grow up!).

Parents should also tell their kids that the pediatrician will ask them questions about their bodies to ensure they are healthy. If the child is six years old and has no developmental or cognitive delays, they may fear that only sick kids see the doctor. Therefore, they may fear that they are sick. Thus, the parents must also tell them that all healthy children go for a checkup. The next thing parents can do to prepare their kids for a pediatrician checkup is to allow them to open up about their feelings about it.

Encourage The Kids To Open Up About Negative Feelings

Kids will naturally say they are scared because of the pain that could go with the checkup and being alone with the doctor and not with the parent. That is when the parents will reassure them and tell them they will be with them during the examination. Additionally, they should tell their kids that they should expect the doctor to use instruments to check their ears, eyes, and mouths and use the stethoscope to check their heart.

When it comes to telling the child about the blood pressure cuff that the doctor will use on the arm, the parent should gently simulate what the cuff feels like by putting their hands around the child’s arm and squeezing it. In fact, parents may want to get creative and pretend that they are the doctor to help ease the child’s fears.

Children may also be embarrassed about going to the doctor if they struggle with bedwetting. Therefore, the parents must reassure their kids that the doctor will be very supportive and helpful and that there is nothing to be ashamed of by having this problem.

The bottom line is that parents need to tell their kids that seeing a pediatrician is not a punishment. Suppose the parents can positively prepare for the pediatrician visit and address all of the child’s fears. In that case, they will become less fearful and apprehensive of seeing the pediatrician whenever they need a checkup or whenever they are sick.

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