If you’re a first time parent, choosing the best pediatrician for your baby can be a daunting endeavor. As an expecting parent, you should begin the search for your child’s doctor at around the seven month mark of pregnancy. Doing so will give you a couple of months to find the doctor you want to care for your newborn in the hospital following your baby’s birth, and beyond. Here are some tips to helping you find the right pediatrician for your newborn!
Start by Asking Family and Friends
A common way for parents to choose a pediatrician is to get a recommendation from their friends or family members. Keep in mind though that many parents have different needs in mind when they choose their pediatrician and your needs might be different from theirs. So be sure to ask why they would recommend their pediatrician.
Consider Your Needs
Write down the areas of new parenthood which are of the greatest concern and interest to you. Consider things like co-sleeping, breastfeeding, alternative immunization schedule, diet, homeopathic remedies, babywearing, etc. You will want to find a pediatrician who is on the same page as you are with regard to your parenting style. For instance, many pediatricians are proponents of attachment parenting and are helpful in encouraging you to stand by your choices. Since sleeping and eating will be your baby’s two biggest areas of concern, find a doc who supports your plans.
One person’s pick may not work for someone else which is why you should collect at least three if not half a dozen names from family, friends and coworkers.
Next, scout out the location of the pediatrician’s office. Given how often you’ll be there, you’ll want a short commute. Also, look into which hospitals your candidates are affiliated with; you’ll want one that’s both convenient and reputable.
Meet and Interview Doctors Face to Face
This is probably the most crucial step before deciding on a pediatrician. First of all, you will see firsthand how their clinic is run, what the staff is like, and how the place feels to you. The information you will get by simply meeting a pediatrician will be invaluable. By allowing yourself time to interview and select a pediatrician or family practitioner for your baby you will be able to research your feelings of parenting and how likely of a match you are with your particular candidate. Take your time. Ask questions and use the best tool already at your disposal: your motherly instinct.