At every appointment, pediatricians are filled with authoritative-sounding advice. Meanwhile, many moms nod their heads and promise they will follow the doctor’s advice, only to turn around and do the complete opposite. Sometimes, moms don’t agree with the advice simply because they don’t believe it works for their baby and other times it’s as a result of doing their own research and coming to their own conclusions.
Throughout all the stories of why moms don’t always follow the pediatricians’ guidelines and recommendations, the consensus is clear: moms know best. But do they always? Some of the stories definitely leave us with much to think about. Do babies need to take a multivitamin? Should moms switch to formula if the baby has reflux?
Pediatricians are consulted for a host of reasons, from regular check-ups all the way to last-minute appointments but it’s easy to forget that they’re there to fix a problem. And this, whether it’s actually necessary or not with the usual medicinal solutions.
With that being said, let’s dive into the various reasons moms haven’t agreed with the pediatrician. While some make sense, others do have us wondering what other doctor’s orders they may have decided to skip out on.
23 Allergies Are Impossible
When it comes to allergies, even doctors can be divided. Melissa shared with us why she decided to switch doctors after her pediatrician wasn’t able to provide solutions to her baby’s problem.
“I had a pediatrician tell me it was impossible for my baby to have food allergies through breastmilk. Every time I ate eggs she threw up. I took her to a different pediatrician who ordered an allergy test. Sure enough, she was severely allergic to eggs. I had to omit eggs or anything made with eggs completely... I’m glad I followed that motherly instinct and took her to a different doctor.”
22 Benadryl To Help Him Sleep
Speaking of allergies, Payton received completely different advice. She revealed:
“At the one-year check-up, I complained to my pediatrician that my son still wasn’t sleeping through the night. His advice made me question all the other advice she has ever given me. She told me to give him a bit of Benadryl for two weeks to ‘teach’ him to sleep through the night.”
Despite this one doctor recommending Benadryl to help the child sleep, this method isn’t actually recommended at all. Multiple studies have shown that it causes more sleep problems and leads to hyperactivity during the day. As much as the child will sleep, they won’t actually have a good sleep.
21 No Milk Before One
And sometimes, although the pediatrician’s advice is actually sound and in line with the latest research and advice, some moms just can’t get behind it. Maddy said:
“I know the advice everywhere is ‘No milk before one’ but that’s one I just couldn’t listen to. I started giving milk to my daughter when she was just 10.5 months and she was fine!”
Despite contrary advice, scores of moms and dads choose to give cow’s milk before one with the reasoning that their children have been “fine” from it. Although it’s not recommended, it’s one of those cases where parents simply go with the flow.
20 Passing On Fluoride
Tanika recanted her confusion when her daughter’s pediatrician recommended fluoride vitamins:
“Already, I wasn’t sold on eventually using toothpaste with fluoride whenever it came time to brush my daughter’s teeth (even I switched to a non-fluoride toothpaste for myself) but when the pediatrician suggested I give my baby fluoride vitamins, that’s certainly one piece of ‘advice’ I wasn’t about to follow. After asking about it in my mommy group, I was told that since formula already has a bit of fluoride, then mixing it with fluoridated water makes levels skyrocket, causing those white specks on the teeth. That’s all I needed to read to convince me not to do it.”
19 Need To Feed Less
For Sanaya, her disagreement with the pediatrician’s advice came over something else entirely. She told us:
“When my son was eight months, our first pediatrician told me to relax on the food as he had gained too much. Um, that's a negative I will feed my child. So, when the nine-month checkup rolled around and my husband took him (who is 6 ft 2 and barely 150), the doctor retracted his statement.”
In this case, we certainly have to agree with her! Although perhaps they could have examined the types of foods that they were feeding the baby, focusing instead on vegetables.
18 One Multivitamin Per Day
Whether to give babies or children multivitamins is a highly debated topic but when the pediatrician suggested giving her baby one every day, Jaclyn just couldn’t get on-board his recommendation. She explained:
“I could not wrap my head around why my eight-month-old would need a multivitamin. I told the pediatrician that I was breastfeeding, eating as healthy as I could and even feeding my baby a variety of foods. Still, he stood behind his recommendation, saying that he advises all babies to take multivitamins once they start eating food, just to make sure they get all vitamins, especially since some babies can be picky eaters. But mine wasn’t at all!”
17 Solids At What Age?!
It’s important to realize that not all pediatricians will give out the most up-to-date information and advice. This is one lesson that Bec learned all too well with her son’s pediatrician. She said:
“When my son was four months, the pediatrician took one look at him and point-blank let me know it was time to start solids. I couldn’t believe my ears, especially after everything I read about waiting to start solids until six months. He was an older doctor on the verge of retiring, so perhaps that’s why. In either case, we waited until six months and did BLW instead.”
16 Load Up On The Sweets & Chips
Jordan told us about the trouble she kept running into with both of her kids. She said:
“At every ... check-up, the doctor would disapprovingly look at their charts and comment on their lower percentiles. I would always try to tell her that my husband is tall and can eat whatever he wants without worrying but she wouldn’t listen. One time, she turned to my kids and told them to eat as much junk as they wanted. That’s where I drew the line and switched doctors.”
No matter the percentile, the advice to eat as much as junk as they want is certainly very unprofessional!
15 Going Holistic Against All Doctors’ Advice
When it comes to doctors and their recommendations, some mothers operate under the thought that staying as natural as possible is the way to go. Kaylene explained:
“Pediatricians and 'guidelines' and 'rules' are OVER-RATED. Bottom line, this mama knows best and holistic remedies are key. Take it back to nature. I've met moms who freak out over tiny things take their kids to the doctor JUST because they have a cough or fever or a rash. Silly! The less doctor visits, medicines, and antibiotics, the stronger immune system. That is why my 9-year-old has NEVER been to the doctor for an Illness. Ever. Never had an antibiotic. And he's the STRONGEST kid I know!”
14 CIO Is The Way To Go
In Rylee’s case, it’s actually a good thing she didn’t give into trying the pediatrician’s recommendation. When she told the doctor that her daughter still was sleeping through the night at six months, he suggested something she was steadfast against.
“The pediatrician held strong for CIO at six months. Sure, it was annoying that my daughter was still waking up several times per night but it’s certainly not a recommendation I was going to jump on, especially given all the studies on the matter.”
Indeed, the CIO method is not recommended at all nowadays as the negative consequences are too great.
13 Crib Be Gone!
On the other hand, some pediatricians have strong opinions about other things as well. Ashleigh told us:
“All throughout my son’s life, every check-up always positive and encouraging. Still, by the two-year check-up, we were right on track. But at 2.5 years old, I had to book an impromptu appointment because my son had been sick for over a week and his cough just wasn’t going away. While she did suggest medicine, she also looked me in surprise when she learned he was still sleeping in his crib. She said that he HAD to be out of his crib by 2.5 but I didn’t transition him until way later.”
12 Switch To Formula For Reflux
Valerie told us about one recommendation that she refused to follow:
“The pediatrician suggested switching to formula instead of breastfeeding because my daughter had really bad reflux. But I chose not to listen and researched ways to reduce reflux instead. I’m glad I didn’t listen because a friend later told me that after doctor (we have the same one) gave her this exact advice and she made the switch because breastfeeding hadn’t been going well anyways, her son’s reflux became much more difficult to handle.”
In effect, breastmilk is said to be much gentler on a baby’s tummy and if debating switching, it’s better to keep going with breastfeeding!
11 Cereal In The Bottle
For Brandi, the choice whether to put cereal in the bottle or not was a clear one. She explained:
“Ours didn’t want us to put rice cereal in the bottle when we started weaning. I was going through formula and breastmilk like it was going out of style. My daughter would wake up starving and wasn’t sleeping well. I got the best quality rice cereal and mixed a scoop in. She was a happy kiddo and I got some sleep.
I trust my decision. My daughter needed to get switched to toddler formula early because she was still so hungry in the middle of the night despite her heaping of a dinner. My girl likes to eat!”
10 Speech Therapy At 2
For some reason, lots of pediatricians give out speech therapy referrals at the two-year mark but for Amber, that simply wasn’t going to be an option. She explained what she did instead:
“By the time of my son’s two-year-old appointment, he had just started saying 2 words. My pediatrician suggested taking him to speech therapy but both me and my husband decided against it because I was told all they would do was talk to him and work on his words. I ended up doing all of that myself and now he talks so much better at a year later.”
9 Back Only For Sleeping
As much as doctors have tons of advice based on all the latest studies and research, sometimes it’s hard to follow it all. Karissa told us about the one advice she just wasn’t able to listen to:
“Sleep on their back. I did with my 1st, and I tried with my 2nd but she flat or would not sleep on her back after she was about 2-months-old. And she was rolling well both ways, so we let her sleep on her tummy but with no other blankets or toys on a hard crib mattress and used an angel care monitor.”
8 No Need For Vitamins
While there are some doctors who recommend multivitamins, there are others who actually don’t. Monique told us about her choice on the matter:
“Mine used to tell me my kids did No need extra vitamins they’ll get all they need in food. Ummm no! As kids do not always eat properly so I never ever listened to that! - I grew up with the healthiest foods (never junk food) and my mom Still gave us extra vitamins-ALL THE TIME! I was hardly sick, same as my kids!
I live by keeping the immune system boosted at All times (vitamins all the time) to avoid any sickness and washing hands- LOTS.”
7 Use This Cream
When it comes to eczema, no one really knows what to do: not the parents and not even the doctors! However, as Lynn proved, the answer doesn’t always lie within creams – not for every child anyways. She said:
“Since she was a baby, my daughter has had patches of eczema on her legs, arms, and back. All the doctor kept doing was [recommend] pots of cream after cream. But after reading about the effects of these cream online, I just didn’t want to put it on my baby anymore. I tried coconut oil on her face instead and surprisingly, it did the trick.”
It’s important to note that effective treatments are different for each case.
6 Don’t Go Out!
For her part, Alisha recounted one piece of advice that she was in no mood to follow:
“The pediatrician advised us not to take our newborn out for the first four months because it was right in the middle of cold and flu season. As much as I understood the logic of this, I’m someone who always needs to be out and about! I couldn’t just stay cooped up in the house all day with nothing to do, so I went out to the mall and local mom gatherings anyways. My baby got [sick] once and it wasn’t even that bad.”
5 Forward-Face At 1
When should the baby face forward in the car? The question is a highly debated one but the consensus on this one is clear: it’s actually better to rear-face for as long as possible. This is why Maja chose not to listen to her pediatrician. She explained:
“I was a little taken aback when at the one-year check-up, my son’s pediatrician mentioned in a matter-of-fact voice that it was OK to forward-face now. Actually, no it wasn’t and I certainly wasn’t about to listen! My son is three-years-old now and still riding backwards because I got a car seat with the highest restrictions.”
4 Stop Feeding, She’ll Get Cavities!
Rebeka told us her story:
“Already my doctor had always tried to push me to switch to formula but I officially lost it when she told me to stop breastfeeding to sleep. When I asked why, she said that breastfeeding to sleep can cause cavities. I just couldn’t take it after that and switched to a friendlier doctor who didn’t question the feeding method I chose for my daughter.
As Kelly Mom explains, “Essentially, a valid link has not been made between breastfeeding (nighttime or otherwise) and cavities. However, breastfed babies can certainly get cavities, so good dental hygiene is important.”
3 Wait Until 6 Months For Solid Foods
We already covered the story of one mom whose pediatrician recommended starting solids at the four-month mark but interestingly, other moms actually choose to start in advance despite their doctors’ recommendations! Michelle explained:
“When I asked the pediatrician about starting solids at four months, he right away said that no, the current guidelines suggest waiting until six months. I totally get it and I read about it a lot but my avid eaters just needed more food at four months. Just breastfeeding wasn’t making them happy, so with both my kids, I started solids at four months. Do I regret it? Not one bit.”
2 Getting A Second Opinion On Baby's Limited Range Of Motion
In Hailey’s case, it’s actually a good thing that she went against the pediatrician’s advice. She told us about what happened:
“My youngest was not reaching any milestones, at all. She was not using the full motion of her neck or arm. The pediatrician said it was due to her being premature (she was only 3 weeks early but super tiny and 100% healthy). We switched pediatricians at her one-year mark, because I knew something was off. Turns out she had torticollis and needed physical therapy to gain full motion. If only the first one would have just given us a referral right away!”
1 A Precautionary Method
For her part, Shannon decided that the pediatrician’s advice certainly wasn’t for her and she ended up being said. She shared with us:
“At just four-months-old, my baby just kept crying and crying. I took him to the doctor who after looking into his ears said that there was some fluid in there and that he would need antibiotics. But the thing is that he said that it was to prevent an ear infection as there wasn’t one yet. After looking online, I decided to wait it out and sure enough, everything was fine when we saw the doctor again after a week.”
References: Kelly Mom