|SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center|
Your Child's Checkup: 3 to 5 Days
What to Expect During This Visit
Your baby's doctor and/or nurse will probably:
1. Check your baby's weight, length, and head circumference and plot the measurements on the growth charts.
2. Ask questions, address any concerns, and offer advice about how your baby is:
Feeding. Newborns should be fed when they seem hungry. Breastfed infants eat about every 1 to 3 hours, and formula-fed infants eat about every 2 to 4 hours. Your doctor or nurse may observe breastfeeding and help with technique. Burp your baby midway through a feeding and again at the end.
Peeing and pooping. Newborns should have several wet diapers a day. The number of poopy diapers varies, but most newborns have 3 or 4 soft bowel movements a day. Tell your doctor if you have any concerns about your newborn's bowel movements.
Sleeping. A newborn may sleep 18 hours a day or more, waking up often (day and night) to breastfeed or take a bottle. Breastfed babies usually wake to eat every 1 to 3 hours, while formula-fed babies may sleep longer, waking every 2 to 4 hours to eat (formula takes longer to digest so babies feel fuller longer). Newborns should not sleep more than 4 hours between feedings until they have good weight gain, usually within the first few weeks. After that, it's OK if a baby sleeps for longer stretches.
Developing. In the first month, babies should:
3. Perform a physical exam with your baby undressed while you are present. This exam will include an eye exam, listening to your baby's heart and feeling pulses, inspecting the umbilical cord, and checking the hips.
4. Update immunizations. Immunizations can protect infants from serious childhood illnesses, so it's important that your baby receive them on time. Immunization schedules can vary from office to office, so talk to your doctor about what to expect.
Here are some things to keep in mind until your next routine visit at 1 month:
These checkup sheets are consistent with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)/Bright Futures guidelines.
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD