If your child is sick, and you are waiting for an appointment with the pediatrician, it might be a nerve-wracking time. But rather than spending that time worrying, use it time to become informed. These days, the Internet makes it easy to research symptoms and conditions. You can get an idea of the possibilities and treatments to expect just by searching Web sites. Having an idea of what to expect will help you make better decisions when you are with the doctor. And because pediatricians are typically very busy, becoming informed can make the visit to the pediatrician more efficient.
However, on the same token, it's important not to jump to conclusions before you get a professional pediatrician's advice. If you're going to research on your own, it's also essential to go to a reliable source, such as:
- Nemours Foundation for Children's Health
- The American Academy of Pediatrics
- Mayo Clinic
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration
At these groups' sites and others, you'll be able to find trustworthy articles written by medical professionals. Being informed will also help you be able to distinguish between situations where you do or don't need to call the pediatrician, which we'll discuss next.