Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
Well Child Care at 5 Years
Your child may enjoy helping to choose and prepare the
family meals with supervision. This will help teach him
good food habits. Mealtime should be a pleasant time for
the family. Avoid junk foods. Children watch what their
parents eat, so set a good example.
Children at this age usually are imaginative, get along well
with friends their own age, and have lots of energy. Be
sure to praise children lavishly when they share things with
Wetting the bed at night is still common at this age. If
your child still wets the bed regularly, you may want to ask
about ways to help your child.
Five-year-olds usually are able to dress and undress
themselves, understand rules in a game, and brush their own
teeth. For behaviors that you would like to encourage in
your child, try to "catch your child being good." That is,
tell your child how proud you are when he does things that
help you or the family.
Punishment for dangerous or hurtful behaviors is necessary.
Sending a child to a quiet, boring corner without anything
to do for 5 minutes is one way of handling these situations.
For more information see: Normal Development: 5 Years
Accidents are the number-one cause of deaths in children.
Prevent Fires and Burns
- Practice a fire escape plan.
- Check your smoke detector battery.
- Keep a fire extinguisher in or near the kitchen.
- Teach your child to never play with matches or
- Teach your child emergency phone numbers and to leave
the house if fire breaks out.
- Turn your water heater down to 120ƒF (50ƒC) .
- Always wear seat belts.
- Don't buy motorized vehicles for your child.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety
- Supervise street crossing. Your child may start to
look in both directions but don't depend on her ability
to cross a street alone yet.
- Buy and use a bicycle helmet.
- Do not allow your child to ride a bicycle near traffic.
- Don't buy a bicycle that is too big for your child.
- Continuously watch your child around any water.
- Never allow your child to climb on chairs, ladders, or
- Do not allow your child to play on stairways.
- Make sure windows are closed or have screens that
cannot be pushed out.
Safety Around Strangers
- Safety outside the home is very important to discuss
with your child.
- Teach your child her address and phone number and how
to contact you at work.
- Teach your child never to go anywhere with a stranger.
- Teach your child to take medicines only with
- Teach your child to never eat unknown pills or
- Put the poison center number on all phones. The poison
control number is ____________________.
- Ask your doctor about syrup of Ipecac. Use it only if
you are told to do so.
- Brushing teeth regularly after meals is important.
Think up a game and make brushing fun.
- It is also a good idea to make an appointment for your
child to see the dentist.
Your child may receive one or more shots. After a shot your
child may run a fever and become irritable for about 1 day.
Your child may also have some soreness, redness, and
swelling in the area where a shot was given. For fever,
give your child a dose of acetaminophen (240 mg = three
80-mg chewable tablets). For swelling or soreness put a
wet, warm washcloth on the area of the shot as often and as
long as needed for comfort.
Call your child's physician immediately if:
- Your child has a fever over 105ƒF (40.5ƒC).
- Your child has a severe allergic reaction beginning
within 2 hours after the shot (for example, hives,
wheezing, noisy breathing, swelling of the mouth or
- Your child has any other unusual reaction.
A once-a-year check-up is recommended.