What to Expect

Guiding Your Child Through Their First Appointment

People often ask what makes us different–and our answer is always we listen first.

From the moment you walk through the door for your first visit, you and your family will be respected and heard. Your physician will conduct a complete medical history, learn your family’s unique story, and complete a physical exam before laying out the plan for the coming weeks and months.

At this visit, our support staff will get you acquainted with many of the other features of Premier, such as Klara–our password-protected texting system–and Phreesia–our online patient portal system, which includes our easy payment system.

The entire visit usually takes about 30 minutes. Please feel free to give us a call or email our team if you have any questions at all.

We can’t wait to begin this journey together and welcome you to the Premier Pediatrics family!

At some point, most children will develop a healthy fear of going to the doctor. A pretend doctor’s visit a day or two before the actual visit is an excellent way to alleviate some of these fears. Role-playing the entire visit using a play medical kit and taking turns as the doctor and patient is an excellent method to introduce your child to the upcoming visit. Pretend to take weight and height measurements, look in the ears and throat, listen to the heart with a toy stethoscope, and practice taking deep breaths for the lung exam. 

When you get to the vaccines, give a light pinch for each of the vaccines. Take a moment to tell your child that the doctor will examine their private parts. Then, as a part of their job, they’ll need to examine the whole body. Tell them that “no one can see their private area unless you and your child say it is alright.” If your child exhibits heightened fear around any part of the exam, do not dwell on it and move on to the next section of the visit.

It is also helpful to read books about going to the doctor. These books allow kids to learn about the doctor’s visit without the anxiety of focusing on their trip to the doctor. There are many excellent books, but we suggest you select books with your child’s favorite character.

It can also be very helpful to bring a stuffed toy to the visit. For example, your pediatrician may perform the exam on their toy first or use the toy as their “medical assistant.” This technique usually puts younger kids at ease. 

Finally, have a simple treat to look forward to at the end of the doctor’s visit. Remember, do not use the treat as a threat if your child becomes anxious during the visit. Let your child know that you are proud that they did a great job during the visit. Also, ask your child if they have any questions about the visit afterward.

See you soon and good luck.

Let your child know that they will have a private time with the doctor and that anything said during this time will remain between them and the physician. Reassure your child that they can discuss anything with you, as their parents, but this is an excellent opportunity if they need some more adult advice or support.

Also, take a business card from the front desk and let your child know that the doctor is always available if they have a question or problem. Similarly, let them know that any conversation will be kept in confidence.

Finally, alert your adolescent that we will conduct confidential depression and substance abuse screens starting at age 14. The results of the screenings will remain between the patient and the physician.