It is not easy finding a doctor you and your child can trust and develop a positive, fruitful relationship with. A pediatrician is your child’s primary care doctor, which means they are your first point of contact when your child has a medical need. Pediatricians are experts in caring for a broad range of conditions and injuries impacting children. Most children see the same pediatrician for several years – sometimes even up to adulthood.
You may be wondering when your child can let go of their pediatrician and see another type of primary care doctor. After all, aren’t pediatricians supposed to treat babies and children? Not necessarily. Let’s find out more.
When Should Your Child Stop Seeing A Pediatrician?
The simple answer to this question is that it depends on your child, as well as their health needs and development. Generally, your child definitely needs care from a pediatrician until they reach adulthood at the age of 18. However, most patients see their pediatrician up until the age of 21, at which time they transition to a family doctor or an internist – both of which are primary care doctors for adults.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has certain recommendations for your child to see a pediatrician. In 1938, it was recommended to visit a pediatrician until age 18. However, this stance changed to 21 in 1969. In 2017, it was recommended to discard the age limit of seeing a pediatrician. Instead, visiting a pediatrician must be decided by considering a child’s specific needs.
When Age Range To See Pediatrician Can Be Extended
In some circumstances, it becomes crucial for your teen or young adult to continue seeing their pediatrician for their healthcare needs. Such situations include the following:
If Your Child Has A Chronic Health Condition: If your child is suffering from a chronic congenital disease, asthma, sickle cell anemia, or other problem, their pediatrician can handle their healthcare needs until they reach their early 20s. This is because the pediatrician is well aware of their medical history and treatment plan, which can make for convenient and effective care.
If Your Child Has Special Needs: The age range to see a pediatrician can be extended if your child has special needs. For example, suppose a child has Down’s syndrome, autism, or intellectual and developmental difficulties. In such cases, they can benefit from seeing the same pediatrician because of familiarity and comfort.
If Your Child Is A College Student: When in college, your child may find it hard to find a new doctor. Seeing a familiar doctor for a few more years can be beneficial until they finish school and enter the world as an independent adult for the first time.
Pediatrician Near Me In Wayne County, Ohio
If you’re searching for an experienced pediatrician for your child, you’ve come to the right place. Our pediatrician team at Wooster Community Hospital can serve all your child’s healthcare needs and offer support for their physical, mental, and emotional growth.
If you would like to learn more about our pediatric services or schedule an appointment, call us at (330) 263-8144. We look forward to serving your child!