Finding a Kinderartz and other adventures in healthy living

Here’s a little background information!

On Monday the 19th, Miss Veronica had developed an ear infection; I took her to see her pediatrician in Fishers on Tuesday (Inauguration Day!). We got a prescription for Amoxicillin in liquid form, and a decongestant. By Tuesday afternoon, she was feeling so much better, and on Wednesday we had absolutely no issues flying. She was prescribed her antibiotic for ten days, making this Thursday her last day to take her medicine.

I was most vexed by the bottle in which the medicine came. It tended to leak, which was especially problematic because one needed to shake the bottle before administering the medicine.

Yesterday evening, while getting Ronni ready for bed, I forgot that I had not quite fastened the lid to the bottle as tightly as I needed to. When I picked up the bottle by the lid, yes, I spilled the medicine on the carpet, her clothes, the pair of pajamas I had laid out… I was so angry at myself! I ended up only having enough doses for today.

In the meantime, Sourtrout was feeling under the weather, due to cold symptoms. He was sent home from work today with orders to go to a doctor.

So we set out to see if we could get a few doses of Amoxicillin for Ronni and then find Sourtrout’s doctor, recommended by his company.

Our first visit was to the Stadt Apotheke, or the City Pharmacy. It was highly recommended to us as the best pharmacy with the most knowledgeable staff in Penzberg. We were not disappointed! I was very impressed by the service, as the staff helped us right away.

The Stadt Apotheke was founded in 1895, and inside they still have all the old-fashioned wooden drawers with enamels plates, listing various herbs, tinctures and other remedies, all in Latin. On the shelves were assorted over-the-counter medicines and plenty of herbal remedies as well. I would like to go back sometime and ask if I may take pictures – hopefully the pharmacists would not think that a weird request!

Germans have a long tradition of using natural remedies (naturopathy, and sometimes homeopathy), alongside allopathy (modern medicine). Many of the clients who came in while we were there purchased both medicines and herbal remedies. The pharmacy even offered its own brand of herbal drops for coughs and colds.

The young man who helped us spent a bit of time looking in his computer list for the dosage of Amoxicillin we had for Ronni, but it is not available in Germany. So he then looked at a list of Kinderärzte – Pediatricians – to recommend us Doktor Schröder for Ronni. He said the doctor could examine Ronni to see how she was doing. First he called Dr. Schröder’s office to see if it was open, and then he meticulously wrote down his name, his phone, address, hours and a little map on the paper. Then the pharmacist asked me to look at the city map with him, so he could show me how to get to the doctor’s office. I was genuinely impressed with how informative and helpful the pharmacist was. He did the same for Sourtrout, too.

We then set off, and after getting a bit lost, we discovered that Dr. Schröder’s office is in fact 35 meters from our hotel. How convenient! The office staff was very friendly and assured us that the visit wouldn’t cost us very much (Ronni and I are not yet attached to ‘s German health care insurance). It wasn’t; we only spent 31 Euro.

Dr. Schröder’s office was decorated with Tigerente characters – they are from a beloved series of children’s books here in Germany. The main characters look like this:

We sat in the waiting room while Ronni charmed everyone there. I’m not sure why, but a sign on the door asked all children to have their shoes off while they waited – perhaps to facilitate their doctor visit, I guess. The waiting room turned out to be a great opportunity for me, because I was able to learn about various opportunities for moms and kids. In particular, I picked up a brochure for Kindermusik – music for children. The Penzberg Music School has three levels of Moms and Babies Music Programs, and a new one for ages three months to one year starts in February. What luck! Tomorrow I will take Ronni to the music school so we can register for this class – I’m excited! She is going to love it.

We didn’t have to wait too long for Dr. Schröder, perhaps 20-30 minutes. During our wait in the examining room, Ronni had a great time crawling and sitting up on the table. She is definitely getting more comfortable with both of those skills. Dr. Schröder was excellent. He also asked me where I had learned such good German. While he was examining Ronni, I liked how he told her what he was looking at – what a great way to reinforce parts of the body vocabulary in German! Ronni’s ears look great, he said, and that we have no need to worry. We will give Ronni the remaining medicine and keep giving her the decongestant prescribed for her. I liked Dr. Schröder very much, so I think we’ll continue to go there.

Ronni and I went back to our apartment at this stage. Sourtrout had a successful visit to his company-recommended doctor. He has been told to stay at home for the next few days as he has an upper respiratory infection, and he was prescribed an herbal remedy – it’s a little jar of a blend of primrose and thyme oils. He was given a first dose at the doctor’s office and said he started to feel better after that. Now he has to put some drops into tea and drink it every two hours. So far, it seems to be doing him well!

So all in all, we had a successful day negotiating the German health care system. I am especially glad I have a Kinderarzt for Ronni, as I had been wondering how I would find one. Problem solved!

Note: when traveling in Germany, look for this symbol if you need a pharmacy:

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