Finding the right doctor for your child can be a challenge, so it may be difficult to say goodbye to their pediatrician as they get older. When do you stop seeing a pediatrician? This article offers some advice.
Many parents wonder how long it is appropriate for their child to continue seeing a pediatrician. Pediatricians like me often specialize in child health because we love children and want to help them grow up big and strong. As your child grows older and enters adulthood, you might want to consider whether they need to switch doctors.
But the cutoff for seeing a pediatrician is more flexible than you may realize.
When Do You Stop Seeing a Pediatrician? There’s No Hard-and-Fast Rule
The decision to switch from a pediatrician to a doctor who treats adults depends on a few different factors.
First, as their parent, if you think they would benefit from seeing a physician for their checkups and health needs, you have the right to make that call. You may also want to take your child’s feelings into consideration—if your child has reached their teen years, they may no longer be comfortable seeing a pediatrician.
Another thing to consider is whether your child has any health conditions that are more common in adults—such as diabetes or high blood pressure—in which case, it might make more sense to send them to a doctor who is more familiar with such conditions.
Finally, your pediatrician may have a general cutoff age for their patients. Some pediatricians choose to stop seeing patients once they reach 18, while others may continue to treat patients up to 21 years of age.
Why Might a Young Adult Continue Seeing a Pediatrician?
Aside from the simple fact that finding a new doctor can be challenging, some young adults and adolescents continue to see their pediatrician for a few common reasons.
For instance, if your child has a chronic condition or disability and you are concerned about how a new doctor might impact their treatment and comfort, sticking with your pediatrician may be the best option. Your child’s pediatrician is familiar with their health and treatment, so switching doctors could feel like you are taking a risk.
Many young adults who are entering college may choose to stay with their pediatrician for the sheer convenience. While they are on campus, they can visit the student health clinic, but when they are visiting home for the summer and winter breaks, it may not make sense to find a new doctor.
When do you stop seeing a pediatrician? Get in touch with me so we can have a conversation.
When to Make the Switch
Ultimately, the decision to transition your child to an adult doctor is between you, your pediatrician, and your child. If you are thinking of making the change, speak to your pediatrician about your concerns. They may be able to offer you advice and refer you to another doctor.
Contact Fit Life Pediatric Consultants to Schedule a Visit
Need to schedule a wellness visit for your teen? Get in touch with Fit Life Pediatric Consultants today to find a time that works for you.