Child Health

We are always happy to review a sick child and discuss matters that may be in doubt, and see parental concern as an important reason for reviewing our paediatric patients. We are also able to help parents make the decision about seeking specialist care for their children.

Babies: 

Babies attend for regular appointments in the first twelve months of life. Their first encounter with their family doctor is usually at their 6 week check, in which a thorough examination is conducted, and during which time parents can ask questions and discuss how they and their baby are doing. We recommend that a double appointment is made for the six week check so that any questions or concerns can be addressed.

Parents often require advice about their growing baby. Common concerns include issues around feeding, sleeping, reflux, teething, growth and development.  Parents of young babies may require help and advice concerning breast feeding or the correct choice of formula for their child.

Common medical conditions seen in babies include: Febrile illnesses, eczema, reflux, rashes, ear infections, conjunctivitis, bronchiolitis and cough, the unsettled baby, nappy rash, diarrhoea and gastroenteritis. 

The current vaccination schedule includes immunisations given at 2, 4, 6 and 12 months of age. Immunisation protects children from preventable and potentially dangerous diseases such as Measles, Rubella, Chicken Pox, Mumps, and some very serious bacterial infections for example Meningococcal.  Some preventable diseases are becoming more common in the community which makes protecting babies against these illnesses important.

Infants: 

As infants start to move and communicate, their medical needs may change. Common issues raised by parents of infants or toddlers include:  hearing and speech development, movement and motor development, behavioural issues, sleep and night terrors and diet.

Common medical conditions seen in infants include: rashes, croup, asthma, ear infections, constipation, bacterial skin infections, eczema, tonsillitis, viral respiratory tract infections.

The vaccination schedule for infants includes immunisations given at 18 months and at 4 years. 

At their 4 year vaccination appointment the opportunity is taken to discuss the child’s overall health. This is the last formal appointment on the schedule before starting school.  Height, weight, hearing, development, behaviour, diet and activity levels are the focus of this visit. Generally a double appointment is made so that each of these areas can be addressed.

Children: 

As children progress through school new issues or concerns may arise. These may include: learning difficulties, social difficulties, anxiety and school refusal, behavioural problems, difficulty controlling weight, vision and eye health, allergies, bed-wetting, and development. Parents, teachers and doctors work as a team in the care of school-aged children: both in recognising and then in managing health issues.

Common medical conditions seen in school children include:  asthma, obesity, allergies, anxiety, infections, musculoskeletal conditions, abdominal pain, constipation.

The vaccination schedule for school children includes immunisations given at Year 7.

Adolescents: 

Adolescence refers to the period of time between the onset of puberty and maturity. In medical terms this refers broadly to the time spent at secondary school. This is a special but at times turbulent time in a person’s development. Many new themes and issues need to be addressed. These may be raised by parents, teachers, doctors and importantly by the adolescent themselves. Concerns particular to adolescence include:  anxiety, stress and mental health issues, identity, independence, social skills and friendships, education about drugs and alcohol, education about personal safety, behavioural  problems and risk taking, puberty and physical development, learning difficulties, obesity, body image issues, diet, exercise, sleep, and interest in relationships and dating. Education about sex also becomes important at this time.

Themes addressed in adolescence can be complex. It is important to talk to parent and adolescent together, but then also set aside time to talk to the adolescent one-on-one. It is recommended that double appointments are made if complex or sensitive issues are being addressed during consults with our adolescent patients.

Common medical conditions seen in adolescence include: anxiety, stress, depression, asthma, musculoskeletal problems, acne, menstrual problems, obesity, anorexia, headache, gastrointestinal problems and infections.

The final immunisations on the schedule are given to adolescents at year 10.

Each of our doctors can assist with managing your child, please call 9650 4284 for an appointment.