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Helping To Find A Wellness Minded Pediatrician

By Claudia Anrig, DC

Today wellness-educated parents are searching to create a “Wellness Healthcare Team” for their children. Many parents want to work with a spectrum of doctors and healthcare providers that suit the ongoing needs of their family.

A growing number of parents, many of them who are bringing their children to a family chiropractor, are also looking for a pediatrician who would take a holistic approach with their children and not always write a prescription; but discuss different options for your child.

One question to ask, “Is my current pediatrician a wellness-minded doctor, and if not, how do you find a wellness-minded pediatrician?”

Where does one begin to find a wellness-minded pediatrician? For a new referral you might want to start with someone who is already a part of your current wellness team. This may be your family chiropractor, midwife, naturopath or others whose advice you trust.

Interview your current healthcare advisors and inquire about who they believe are the best and the worst pediatricians (having the latter list will come in handy).

There are several questions that you will need to address; first, in an assessment of your current pediatrician, and then, you can restructure the questions as an interview for potential candidates.

The Meeting Between a Parent and Pediatrician

Once you have a tentative candidate list, contact the pediatrician’s office and arrange for a consult. A oneon- one meeting is the only way to walk away with the answers.

The Questions

Your questions for the meeting can come from the pediatrician assessment listed above. Remember, it is highly unlikely you are going to find a holistic pediatrician in your community. What you are looking to discover is the philosophy of the doctor regarding certain health issues. Inform the doctor that you are looking for a pediatrician who takes a more natural (wait-and-see) approach and would take a less invasive approach for your children. Don’t be abrasive or expect to change a doctor’s belief system of practice.

A Relationship with Your Doctor

A relationship of any kind will take time. Don’t expect some of the pediatricians to embrace you in the beginning. Take time to slowly introduce information that could cultivate and broaden their knowledge of wellness. Should you come upon an interesting article or website, forward it to them. When you find that there is an issue on which the two of you strongly disagree, agree to disagree.

For example, you will have very few pediatricians who oppose vaccinations. Ask them if they are interested in a continuing dialogue, and if you could order them a subscription to the NVIC newsletter ( as a basis of your discussion.

Do not send literature that is not scientifically referenced. Remember, these doctors were educated that their protocol for care is based on science (even if some of it is bad).

As your relationship builds let them know more about the other healthcare providers in the life of your family (i.e. family chiropractic, naturopath, etc). Some doctors will need to be educated that, for example, your family chiropractor doesn’t treat a disease or disorder, but rather assists the body to improve its function from the state of dis-ease. Develop a new relationship with your new pediatrician and your wellness healthcare team. Ask your pediatrician if he or she would like to meet your family chiropractor; let them know what a great asset this doctor is to your community.

Remember that every conversation you have with your pediatrician might be one more seed that you plant for a wellness future for your children and their children’s children.

In the best of both worlds, it would be an asset for our families to have their healthcare team be a healthy partnership between the family wellness chiropractor and the wellness-oriented pediatrician.

Dr. Claudia Anrig has been actively involved in pediatric chiropractic for almost 25 years. As an international instructor on the subject and editor of the first and most comprehensive Chiropractic Pediatric Textbook, Dr Anrig has contributed extensively to the chiropractic profession with her expertise and knowledge.

Assessment of my current pediatrician:

  • Is my pediatrician a wellnessminded doctor?
  • Does my pediatrician promote good nutrition?
  • Does my pediatrician promote breastfeeding?
  • Does my pediatrician routinely prescribe antibiotics for every cold or suspected ear infection?
  • When my pediatrician suspects my child has an ear infection, do they perform a culture to confirm the necessity for an antibiotic?
  • Will my pediatrician take a wait-and-watch approach to a fever?
  • When you inform your pediatrician that you are not interested in vaccinations for your child, are you still treated warmly?
  • Will your pediatrician return your phone calls in the same day?
  • How many times has your child received a prescription in their lifetime and why?
  • How long of a wait do you usually have at their office?
  • Is there a separate area for sick children?
  • Is the office clean and kid-friendly?
  • Is the staff friendly?
  • Does my pediatrician know that my child is under chiropractic care (or other wellness care individuals)?
  • If you could have a wish list for a great pediatrician what would it be?