Does Your Child Need a Pediatric Specialist?
Adults and children suffer from many of the same diseases and conditions, but the developing human organism is not simply a miniature version of the fully formed being.
Infants, children and adolescents go through many different stages of physical, emotional and intellectual development; and the care of young people under the age of 18 may also involve legal questions of capacity to consent to treatment.
These complexities have led to the development of the medical specialty of pediatrics.
Why Might You Choose a Pediatrician for Your Child
That being said, your family’s primary care physician is of course qualified to diagnose and treat people of all ages.
So why might it make sense to take your child to see a specialist pediatrician; that’s to say a primary care doctor who has additionally completed a 3 year pediatric residency and passed the examinations required by the American Board of Pediatrics?
Here are three possible reasons.
According to a 2014 study, most family doctors spend only around 10% of their time treating children, and therefore cannot hope to match the practical experience amassed by specialist pediatric doctors.
This extra experience is likely to be of particular value in enabling more effective communication with child patients, especially when they are in pain or frightened by the unfamiliar environment of a hospital or medical practice.
Helping children to understand what is wrong with them, and being able to explain the treatment they need in simple and reassuring terms are valuable skills of the pediatric specialist.
While many common health problems may occur in adults and children alike, there are some illnesses which are very common in children, particularly those of school age, but which are very rare in adults.
Specialization makes the pediatrician better able to keep up with the latest developments in the treatment of these illnesses, and to understand the likely effects of different medications on children.
Most adult medical specialties, such as cardiology or ENT, have their pediatric equivalents, because the organs and processes involved are simply not the same in children as in adults, and therefore often require different treatments.
The very process of growth and development itself, for example of bones and teeth, may also give rise to health issues which do not arise in adults.
The proper development of young children who were born prematurely is also a field of medicine in which pediatricians specialize.
Cost and Availability
One potential disadvantage of seeing a pediatrician is that it may mean extra journeys to a different facility from that of your family’s principal care provider.
But at Warwick Pediatrics we’re part of Crystal Run Healthcare, a modern, multi-disciplinary facility which is designed to allow the easiest possible access to both general and specialist practitioners.
You can find out more about pediatric care at our New York locations by calling us on 845.703.6999 or sending us a message online here.