8-Year Visit

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Harvard Medical School
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8-Year Visit

Guiding Your Child Through The Middle Years
8 years features
8-Year Visit
8-Year Visit
Find out what to expect at the 8-year visit.
InteliHealth Medical Content

Reviewed by the Faculty of Harvard Medical School

8-Year Visit

Name: ______________________________
Date Of Visit: _______________________
Weight: _________________________
Height: ______________________

Things your doctor will do at today's visit:

  • Ask for an update on your child's health
  • Do a physical exam on your child, including checking for scoliosis and signs of puberty
  • Check your child’s weight and height, calculate body mass index (BMI), and plot the measurements on growth charts
  • Check your child’s blood pressure, hearing and vision
  • Ask about your child's eating, bathroom habits, sleep, physical activity and screen time
  • Ask about your child’s behavior and psychosocial development (i.e. riding a bicycle, telling time and knowing days of the week, problem solving)
  • Discuss your child's risk of anemia (iron-poor blood) and test for anemia, if indicated
  • Ask about your family’s history of heart disease and test cholesterol levels if indicated
  • Ask about possible exposure to tuberculosis (TB) and test your child if indicated
  • Make sure your child's immunizations are up to date
  • Give you an opportunity to ask questions

Things you may want to discuss at this visit:

  • Your child's growth and nutrition
  • Your child's behavior and development
  • How your child deals with anger or frustration
  • Your child's sleeping habits
  • Your child-care arrangements before and after school
  • Your child's school performance
  • Any other concerns you have

Things your child may want to discuss at this visit:

  • How school is going for him
  • Activities or sports he is involved in
  • What he and his friends do for fun
  • Questions about growing up, body changes and sex

Things to keep in mind:

  • It is safest for your child to ride in the back seat. Always use a seat belt; use a belt-positioning booster seat with the seat belt until your child is over 4-feet 9-inches tall.
  • Warn your child about the dangers of tobacco, alcohol and drugs.
  • Praise your child’s accomplishments and provide support in areas where your child is struggling
  • Reinforce pedestrian (walking), bicycle, water, playground and stranger safety with your child.
  • Teach your child what to do in case of an emergency and how to dial 911.
  • Prevent gun injuries by not having a gun at home. If you do have a gun, keep it unloaded and locked away. Ammunition should be locked up separately.
  • Teach your child how to handle dental emergencies, especially the loss or fracture of a tooth.
  • Make sure your child brushes teeth twice a day, flosses once a day, and sees a dentist once every 6 months.
  • Teach your child to swim and always supervise your child in the water. Teach your child never to go swimming unless an adult is watching.
  • Apply sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher on your child at least 15 minutes before going outside. Reapply every 2 hours.
  • Limit your child’s exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Help your child learn healthy eating habits, such as eating five servings of fruits and vegetables daily, and limiting high-fat and sugary foods.
  • Eat some meals together as a family.
  • Encourage positive interactions with teachers and other adults.
  • Make sure your child gets regular physical activity and enough sleep.
  • Assign age-appropriate chores, including responsibility for personal belongings, and provide some personal space for your child at home.
  • Limit television, video watching and video games to one to two hours per day. Watch programs with your child and discuss them.
  • Monitor your child's Internet usage.
  • Encourage reading and hobbies.
  • Know your child's friends and their families.

Schedule an appointment for your child's next visit, usually at 10 years of age.



Based on health supervision guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics and from Bright Futures, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, under the direction of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

Last updated August 27, 2014

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