If you are expecting a baby, congratulations! This is an exciting time for you. You’re probably making plans to decorate the nursery, shop for car seats and cribs, and get everything ready. This is also the perfect time to start gearing up be the best possible advocate for your child’s health. I believe all parents should start advocating for their children as soon as they know they are expecting. Here’s how.
• Make a Better Baby Book – You can start creating your baby’s personal health book as soon as you know you are expecting. Keep track of all the details of your pregnancy including a journal of mom’s health and medications. Also be sure to get copies of all test results as your pregnancy progresses. I like to keep a binder with divider tabs for all my health information. Read my article on my binder system to learn how you can start a health binder for you and your new baby. And don’t think your baby’s book should only include the boring medical details. This book can be a wonderful gift to your child later in life. After all, we all like to hear more about ourselves and what we were like as children. So include the fun and wacky details like how much weight mom gained and what foods she craved while she was pregnant.
• Dig into Genetics – If you haven’t already done it, now is also the time to find out about any genetic conditions that run in mom or dad’s family. Whatever information you can discover about conditions you baby might be more likely to have because they run in your family can help your doctor watch for early clues or symptoms so he or she can make the best possible decisions for your baby’s health.
• Pick a Pediatrician – Of course, having a fantastic pediatrician is a crucial part of being your child’s health advocate. I f you already have children you’ve probably got this covered. But if this is your first child, don’t wait until your baby is born to start looking for a pediatrician. The best ones may have a long waiting list for new patients.