Pediatricians provide primary medical care to infants, children and adolescents. Children may see the same pediatrician from birth until 18 years of age (sometimes longer), fostering a close rapport between the doctor and child. This allows for more comprehensive and complete care as the child grows and matures into a young adult.
General pediatricians are trained to provide the unique medical care that children require. Although children can be treated by general or family practitioners, pediatricians are in a much better position to provide comprehensive care. When providing care, pediatricians have many goals in mind. These include controlling infectious disease, reducing the mortality rates of infants and children, and promoting and developing healthy lifestyles in children.
Pediatricians are well equipped to diagnose and treat a variety of illnesses, diseases and injuries faced by children. These may include general infections and illnesses (such as fevers, sore throats, ear infections, etc.) and minor injuries, as well as some diseases. Pediatricians are trained to identify mental or emotional stressors in children that may lead to psychiatric or mental health complications, including developmental and anxiety disorders, behavioral problems and functional complications, among other indicators.