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childrens clinic

The Importance of Childhood Nutrition

From the time your baby is born until they leave the nest as a young adult, nutrition is an essential part of their overall health and wellness. Kids go through an astounding range of developmental stages early in life, and their bodies need a steady stream of nutrients to meet the demands of growth and development.

Consider the changes that take place in just the first year of life. Babies seem to grow every day, and their brains are busy processing information and exploring connections with others. Nutrition enables and guides that growth. Researchers know that kids without optimal nutrition suffer a wide range of developmental challenges.

Your child’s nutrition continues to be important as they move through early childhood and into adolescence when they go through another period of intense growth and development.

Few things are more important to pediatric health than nutrition, yet this is an area where many parents feel they need additional support.

The team at the Children’s Clinic, with offices on the West End and in downtown Billings, Montana, can talk to you about whether your kids are meeting their nutrient needs and connect you with a pediatric nutritionist and other specialists if your child requires additional support. The practice also employs an international board-certified lactation consultant to specifically work with moms and newborns to make sure that breastfeeding is successful and that new babies get the nutrition they need.

Nutrition Service Q&A

No matter what type of nutritional challenges your family is facing, you have the guidance and support of a Children’s Clinic pediatrician as you move forward. Booking a visit is as simple as a phone call or a few moments on the online appointment request page, so don’t delay.

How can a pediatrician help with nutrition needs?

The pediatricians at the Children’s Clinic have training in childhood nutrition and regularly assist families with these issues. If your family struggles with any nutrition-related issue, connecting with a pediatrician is the best place to begin.

 A common area of concern is infant nutrition. Breastfeeding mothers are often concerned that their baby isn’t getting enough milk, which is why the practice has a lactation consultant available for all breastfeeding moms.

Transitioning to solid foods is also a source of worry. As your baby expands their diet, knowing which foods to introduce and when is stressful for many parents. Little kids are often very particular about what they will and won’t eat. For some, this leads to a very narrow range of foods and the risk of nutritional deficiencies. Your pediatrician can help you find ways to expand your child’s nutritional range and ensure they develop and thrive.

Some kids experience allergies that make it challenging to eat a varied diet. Allergy testing can give your family insight into how to enhance nutrition without causing a reaction.

Even adolescents can encounter nutritional issues. Some teens struggle with obesity, while for others, issues like anorexia and bulimia pose problems. Student-athletes can also find themselves without the necessary nutrients to perform at peak levels.

When should I schedule a visit to discuss nutrition issues?

There is no bad time to broach the topic of nutrition, and the providers at the Children’s Clinic often bring up the subject during routine newborn, well-child, and adolescent visits. If you notice an area of concern surrounding your child’s eating habits, reach out to the practice to request a visit.

Some childhood nutritional concerns can be dealt with during a single visit. In other cases, addressing nutritional deficiencies takes time and becomes part of your child’s ongoing health care.