North Carolina Pediatric Associates offers comprehensive pediatric care to patients going through every developmental stage. From newborns to teenagers, our staff will be with you and your family every step of the way. We also help parents and guardians understand what to expect and prepare them for their child’s biggest needs.
Preparing for the arrival of a newborn is one of the most exciting, and frightening, times of your life. At North Carolina Pediatric Associates, we are here to help you care for your child from the moment they’re born. During the first few weeks with your newborn, expect to focus on the mother’s recovery, feeding the baby and establishing daytime and nighttime routines. Every newborn is different, so it will take some time and patience before you’re able to figure out your baby’s likes and dislikes.
Check out our Newborn Booklet for more information.
A baby goes through some of the most remarkable transitions and changes during the first year of their life. Over the course of just one year, your baby develops from being completely dependent to someone with interests and curiosity. At this stage, your baby will grow very quickly and you may be surprised by what they can do.
The first three months may seem the hardest, but the more responsive you are to their needs, the more secure they are likely to feel. During this time, infants become more responsive, gain more control of their muscles, improve their visual coordination and will likely sleep longer during the day and night.
At about four months, most infants have developed regular eating, sleeping and playing habits. Between four and seven months, your baby will reach a number of motor milestones. It’s important to maintain an understanding of your child’s temperament and have warm responses to their needs. There’s nothing more exciting than the face-to-face interactions you have with your infant.
Many things occur during the last few months of infancy. Babies will begin sleeping through the night, pull themselves up to stand, attempt to feed themselves and possibly even take their first steps. They’ll develop a more understandable language and display some separation anxiety, which is a normal, healthy display of their attachment to you. Your infant will explore the world by touching and putting things in their mouth, so it’s important to redirect their attention from items that can be dangerous and harmful.
Your life changes immensely during the first year of your child’s life. North Carolina Pediatric Associates is eager to help you make those first 12 months as comfortable and enjoyable as possible!
Toddler Years (1-3)
At one year old, your child’s development will begin increasing rapidly. They will call you by name, improve their vocabulary, walk around while holding onto furniture, start climbing, feed themselves and so much more. Between 12 and 24 months, your toddler will also begin to transition from breast milk or formula to regular milk from a bottle or sippy cup. Remember to enjoy and participate in their development. However, we also understand a toddler is not the easiest person to live with – saying “no” is more common than saying “yes,” throwing toys occurs more often than picking them up and sharing becomes a challenge. Minimize unfavorable behavior by childproofing the environment, keeping a logical daily routine and doing your best to anticipate when they’re tired, hungry or not feeling well.
Don’t let the “Terrible Twos” worry you. For most toddlers, these months are when they have more control over their language skills and watch your activities intently, with the hopes of helping out in any way they can. Two-year olds are explorers and no area of your home is safe. Put forth the extra effort to securing household cleaning products and medications. Of course, terrible behavior is inevitable because children at this age want it both ways and have trouble making up their minds. Despite the challenges you’ll face, take time to appreciate the little things. The physical, emotional, and intellectual growth of your child in this stage is remarkable and the year will be over before you know it.
Three-year olds have meaningful social skills, begin to form friendships and become more cooperative. They can better express themselves, ask “why?” all the time and have vivid imaginations. At this age, your toddler will have much better motor skills, be better at using the potty and may be ready for a toddler bed. Three-year olds feed off their environments so it’s important to continually provide positive reinforcement and fuel their curiosity.
Our staff at North Carolina Pediatric Associates is happy to discuss any specific concerns you might have about your child’s behavior during the toddler years. Call one of our three locations today!
Preschool Years (3-4)
Preschoolers have a greater sense of independence, from using the restroom and picking out their own clothes to taking care of others. They will also begin forming respect for authority and have a heightened sense of coordination. This is a wonderful stage because they’re enthusiastic, fun, imaginative and oftentimes, hard to keep up with!
At this stage, family time is very important to help your child establish their identity. Meals together are a great start, but be aware that your child may be hesitant to try new foods. Your preschooler is learning quickly and will pick up new shapes, colors, figures and objects. They will continually make you proud with how knowledgeable they’re becoming.
Elementary Years (5-11)
Our elementary years contribute to some of our fondest childhood memories and recalling your time in school is a great way to connect with your child as they begin their own educational journey. Five-year olds are very imaginative and will ask questions about anything and everything. Through your child’s elementary years, their logic and problem-solving skills will develop. This is also a time in their lives when you may discover a particular learning disability, which is important to address as soon as possible.
Important life and social skills are developed during the elementary years. Your child’s daily activities become more independent and any chores they have will teach responsibility. They will also have the opportunity to learn about practice and teamwork through music and sports. An increase in academic and social activities will help your child learn valuable time-management skills.
Each and every child has a different personality. Some may need more encouragement to get out there and try new things while others will take more risks and need special attention. North Carolina Pediatric Associates can help you customize your parenting and support you along the way.
Teenage years are a wonderful yet challenging time for parents and teens alike. The amount of changes that take place physically, mentally and emotionally can be overwhelming and North Carolina Pediatric Associates is happy to be by your side during every teenage year. We want to ensure a patient’s transition to adulthood is an exciting and healthy process.
To learn more about our adolescent services, screenings and vaccinations, please give us a call today. We’re happy to walk you through and help you understand any stage you’re experiencing.
For more information about our pediatric services, please call one of our three offices or fill out our contact form today. Our team is more than happy to answer all of your questions. We also encourage you to view and download our Ages & Stage guide for additional tips.