Eighteen months is a milestone in a child’s development and a visit to a family physician or other health care provider at this time is important.
Ontario has recognized the importance of the 18-month well-baby visit by funding a longer, more in-depth visit.
The overall goal of this is to better support the healthy development and well-being of Ontario’s children. What it means for you and your child is that you can have a more detailed discussion about your child with your family physician or other health care provider.
When you go for your visit you and your health care provider will discuss your child’s development. You will complete a checklist, such as the Nipissing District Developmental Screen™, which provides a snapshot of your child’s development and a starting point for your discussion.
Alongside the checklist is information on typical child development, as well as activities to enhance development. If you’d like to look at the checklist in advance, you’ll find it at www.ndds.ca. It is a helpful parent tool that is free online to Ontario residents.
The enhanced 18-month well-baby visit is an opportunity for you to discuss your child’s development and ask any questions you may have. For example, you may want to talk about your child’s motor or communications skills or behaviour concerns.
The visit also allows early identification of any concerns and a referral to specialized community services, if necessary, for your child.
These milestones mark the progress of young children as they grow and learn.