Surviving the Waiting Room Wait
Whether it’s the pediatrician’s office or any other appointment, at some point, you will be stuck in a waiting room with your baby. Here’s how to make it less stressful for the both of you.
By getting the first appointment, you’re less likely to have to wait very long. Mid-day or late-day appointment, on the other hand, are usually the least on-time. You’ll be waiting for doctors and nurses running late, other patients’ tardiness or too many appointments scheduled in the day.
Show up early for your appointment – yes, it might mean waiting a little longer, but it’s better than being late and possibly missing your appointment time. In addition, if your child is a new patient, there may be paperwork to fill out prior to seeing the doctor.
Pack two (or more) of everything. The rule of thumb in our house is to pack twice as much as we think we will need. If you think just one bottle will be enough, take two. Bring enough bottles of water and snacks for both the kids and you – you might be waiting a while and need them. In addition, bring plenty of diapers and wipes; infants and babies go through scads of diapers each day and you don’t ever want to be without a fresh one.
Bring a new toy
Skip the play area (they’re notorious germ pits — even, ironically, in doctors’ offices) and bring your own toys – preferably a new one that your child hasn’t seen before. If you don’t have anything on hand try giving them something they aren’t used to such as a pen (remove the ink cartridge of course), pieces of paper or a magazine, an Altoids tin. Just be sure the toy is age appropriate and does not pose a choking hazard or any other danger.
Most likely, you will have to wait for a few minutes. Be prepared to wait and the wait will go a little bit better. In fact, if you are prepared to wait, you might just be pleasantly surprised if you don’t have to wait very long!