Two Month Check-Up
At each visit, your doctor will review how you and your baby are doing, go over any concerns you may have, and will ask you a series of questions about what your baby can do and test for some developmental milestones during the exam. At this age, the doctor may ask you if your baby is smiling yet, if he seems to be able to track objects with his eyes, if he lifts his head when placed on his stomach, and if he has begun to coo.
Your doctor will probably ask you to describe a typical day with your baby, including how active he is, what developmental milestones he has achieved recently, how much he eats, how much he cries, and how many diapers you go through each day. Don't be afraid to ask the pediatrician lots of questions; in fact according to Sharon L. Busey, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at the Medical College of Wisconsin, "Parents should come to visits armed with any questions or concerns they have about their child. The well-baby visit is a good opportunity to address questions that the parent [may have.]" Never leave the office feeling uncertain or uncomfortable about the answers your doctor has given you; he or she is there for you.
The doctor will then perform the standard physical examination of your baby, which includes measuring your baby's length, height, weight, and head circumference. Head circumference is an indirect measure of your baby's brain growth, so the pediatrician will make sure growth is steady and continuous between check-ups. He or she will probably plot all of your baby's measurements on a growth chart; however, try not to compare your baby with others. It is more important that your baby show consistent growth from month to month, rather than how much he weighs or how long he is at a particular check-up. Throughout the first year, your doctor will also watch the soft spots on your baby's head, making sure the one in the back has closed by two or three months; the one at the front of your baby's head may take up to two years to fully close.
The standard physical examination also includes the following:
Ears - Your pediatrician will look for evidence of fluid or infection, as well as make sure your baby's hearing is normal.
Eyes - The doctor will shine a bright light in front of your baby's face to catch his or her attention and check for any signs of infection or impaired vision.
Skin - Your doctor will examine your baby's skin for various conditions, including birthmarks and rashes. The doctor will also make sure your baby's umbilical cord stump has healed.
Mouth - Your pediatrician will check your baby's mouth for signs of infection, such as oral thrush, and later for teething progress.
Heart and lungs - The doctor will listen to your baby's heart and breathing with a stethoscope.
Abdomen - Your pediatrician will press gently on your baby's abdomen to check for any enlarged or abnormal organs.
Genitalia - Your doctor will examine your baby's genitalia to look for any unusual lumps, tenderness or signs of infection.
Hips and Legs - The doctor will move your baby's legs to check for dislocations or other problems. When your baby begins to walk, the doctor will make sure her legs and feet are aligned properly.
At this appointment, your baby will receive the next set of immunization shots, which will probably include DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis), Hib (Haemophilus influenza type B), IPV (polio), Pneumococcal, and Hepatitis B.