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15 Months Well Child Visit

Many pediatricians consider the 15th month as a major “milestone” marker. More than 90 percent of babies now walk and independence has taken hold of your toddler. At this point, many children have gone from walking to sprinting. They are happy as can be doing anything they can to help you in everyday chores and activities.

Feeding Your Toddler: At this point, your child should be off the bottle and drinking from a cup. If that has not happened, wean your child off the bottle slowly over the course of one to two weeks. Don’t be alarmed if your child’s appetite decreases. This is typical because growth has slowed.

Your Toddler’s Sleep: You toddler should have a well-established nighttime routine by this time that allows him to wind down and relax a bit before a full night’s sleep. He will need one or two naps per day.

Your Toddler’s Thinking and Learning Skills: Growth in these areas is huge. Your toddler is an explorer, examiner and imitator. Make his surroundings safe for the exploration. Give him plenty of soft or plastic toys to play with, let him help you wash, mop or fold. He learns through trial and error at this point and looks to you, the parent, to help him solve some problems.

What Your Toddler Will Love to Do: Toddlers at this age love to dance and sing, so turn up the tunes and let him go. Give him paper and crayons so your little Picasso can explore his art skills and talk to him constantly. Point to an object while telling him its name and fill up buckets with toys so he can empty and fill it endlessly. If your nerves can stand it, give him pots and pans for endless fun. Your child will likely start to climb stairs with assistance so never let him try it alone and always use gates to close off areas you are not able to supervise.

Safety and Your Toddler: With all of the exploring and experimenting going on, there are many ways your toddler can find trouble. Keep these safety tips in mind:

Watch your water-loving toddler around any type of water i.e., baths and toilets.

  • Never leave your child alone in a car.
  • Get the proper front-facing car seat for your child.
  • Turn down the water heater to 120 degrees F.
  • Keep hold of your child in traffic or crowded areas.
  • Buy unbreakable toys with no sharp edges or small parts.
  • Keep plastic bags and balloons safely out of reach.
  • Cut food into small pieces to avoid choking.

There will likely be another round of immunizations at this age. If your child runs a small fever or has discomfort, give him acetaminophen based on the dosage suggested by your doctor.