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Published on June 26, 2017

Unexpected Benefits of Annual Child Physicals

Tod Walker, PA-C, with a patientWith all the activities and events you juggle during the summer, it’s no surprise there is a rush to schedule school and sports physicals right before the kids head back to school. However, scheduling now can save you a major headache a few weeks down the road.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, annual physicals for your kids are critical for tracking growth and development and preventing future injuries or illnesses.

Back-to-school appointments are a great time to discuss your child’s health and development more in-depth because you are not there for an existing illness or injury. You and your child should feel free to ask any questions you may have – from changes in their body to possible learning disabilities to appropriate athletic participation.

Annual exams are an easy way to help your child become more comfortable with his or her doctor, too. By discussing what he or she is experiencing or what anxieties about body or social pressures, he or she establishes a relationship that can positively affect self-care for years to come.

This could also be an opportunity for your child to hear important messages from someone other than you. Things like hygiene, getting enough sleep, eating healthy, stress management, and safety might be taken more seriously from a medical professional – no offense, mom and dad!

These appointments are also great for ensuring your children are up-to-date with their vaccinations. Iowa Immunization Law mandates that all school children have complete immunization records on file at the beginning of the school year, so you do not want to skip this important step.

Don’t let summer get away from you – schedule your children’s annual physicals today. If your child is in need of a pediatrician or family doctor, call the MercyCare referral line at (319) 369-4444.

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