Health Library Explorer
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z A-Z Listings Contact Us

Health Screening Guidelines, Birth to Age 2

Screening tests are a key part of managing your child's health. Below are guidelines for children from birth to age 2 from the American Academy of Pediatrics and other health organizations. You and your child’s healthcare provider may decide that a different schedule is best for your child. But this plan can guide your discussion. Talk with your child’s provider to make sure they are up-to-date on what they need.


Who needs it

How often

APGAR score. This is a test to check the overall health of a baby right after birth. Breathing, color, heart rate, muscle tone, and reflexes are checked.

All newborns

1 and 5 minutes after birth

Lead level

All children in this age group

Asses lead exposure risk at 6, 9, and 18 months. Risk assessment or blood test at 12 and 24 months. Children considered at risk may need more testing from age 18 months to 6 years. Ask your child's healthcare provider about screening guidelines in your state.

Newborn screenings. Tests may vary by state. This is a series of tests for conditions such as:

  • Hearing loss

  • Congenital heart disease

  • Congenital hypothyroidism

  • Phenylketonuria

  • Sickle cell disease

  • Cystic fibrosis

  • Severe immunodeficiency

All newborns. Talk with the healthcare provider about the tests in your state.

Testing is done when a baby is at least 24 hours old. It is usually done before discharge from the hospital.

Oral health

Children ages 6 months and older

Dental exams every 6 months. Fluoride supplements from age 6 months to 16 years for those with low fluoride levels in their water. Fluoride varnish should be applied to the primary teeth of all infants starting at the age of 6 months. It is recommended varnish be applied every 3 to 6 months, based on the child's risk for tooth decay.

Online Medical Reviewer: L Renee Watson MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Rita Sather RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Stacey Wojcik MBA BSN RN
Date Last Reviewed: 3/1/2024
© 2000-2024 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
The health content and information on this site is made possible through the generous support of the Haspel Education Fund.
StayWell Disclaimer