Teen Space

Pre teens and teenagers experience rapid growth and many physical, mental, and emotional changes. Even if you visit the doctor frequently, a yearly checkup is still needed. During a routine checkup, weight, height and blood pressure is evaluated. Vision and hearing may be tested. In addition to performing a complete physical exam, providers will discuss your growth and development, answer questions, address concerns, and provide guidance in areas such as exercise, healthy food choices, discipline, safety, developing independence, and accepting additional responsibilities.

Teens should begin to take responsibility for their own health just as they take on new responsibilities in other areas of their life. In recognition of this, we continue to work with your parents, but at older ages, we will begin to see you alone.

We will always encourage you to talk to your parents about your health concerns but in some cases, you may share sensitive information with your health care provider. Except in emergencies or very serious situations, confidential information will not be shared with your parents unless we have your permission

Your health care provider can answer questions about:

  • Eating right
  • Your weight and height
  • Exercise and sports
  • Acne
  • Dating
  • Body changes
  • School performance
  • Alcohol and other drugs
  • Other concerns you may have

Teen Checkup Schedule

Immunizations

Menveo (Meningococcal vaccine): This vaccine helps prevent meningococcal disease, a serious bacterial illness that includes meningitis (the inflammation of the protective layer surrounding the brain and spinal cord) and septicemia (an infection in the blood). One dose is recommended for children and teens between 11 and 18 years of age. The best time to immunize a child with the meningococcal vaccine is between 11 and 12 years of age but if the vaccine is not obtained at this age, the teen should get the vaccine at their next doctor visit. Many colleges now require freshman who are entering college and living in dormitories to receive the meningococcal vaccine.

Boostrix (Tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis vaccine; Tdap) One dose of this vaccine can prevent tetanus (lockjaw), diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough). The vaccine is recommended for people 10 through 64 years of age. It is usually given at 11 years of age, upon entering the 6th grade, or for 12-18 year olds who have missed the dose given at 10-11 years of age. This vaccine is also recommended for 13 to 18 year olds who missed the 11 and 12 year old Td or Tdap booster.

Gardisil (Human Papillomavirus or HPV) This vaccine can help prevent cervical cancers or genital warts. Gardisil may not fully protect everyone, nor will it protect against diseases caused by other HPV types or against diseases not caused by HPV. The AAP recommends that girls 11-12 years of age receive the first dose with two additional vaccines needed to complete this series. The vaccine has been approved for use in boys and young men ages 9 to 26 to help protect against genital warts.

Random Tips for Teens

Think! Think before you do something. Consider the alternatives before you act. Careful thinking produces the best results.

Develop your goals. Goals are what you want to achieve. Make a plan, and imagine yourself achieving your goals. Your imagination and your work each day will help you achieve your goals.

Listen to your parent or the person responsible for your care. Think about what a parent or caring adult says to you. If you disagree, disagree in a respectful manner. A caring adult usually has your best interest in mind when making a decision affecting your life.

Accept responsibility. Take responsibility for what you do.

Learn in school. Pay attention in class, respect your teachers, and learn. Learn as much as you can.

Do your homework. Take your time and concentrate on your homework. If you need help, ask your friends and family. Complete your homework on time and do your best work.

Sorry. If you hurt someone's feelings, apologize. If you made a mistake, apologize. Saying "I'm sorry" will make you and the other person feel better.

Speak up and then listen. It is important to express your opinion. There are situations that require listening. Once you have made your point, stop talking and listen.

Be kind. Think about your actions and the type of person you want to be. Be an understanding and charitable person. Kindness makes everyone feel better.

Be creative and enjoy your creativity. Artists, athletes, corporate presidents, and children are creative. You can be creative in school, at home, or with your friends. You can be creative in sports, in art, in music, with words, or with a computer. Allow yourself to be creative.

Take one step at a time. Every goal has many steps. Go step by step. Accomplish something each day and you will accomplish what you want in life.

Life is full of compromises. No one gets their way all the time. Learn to compromise and you will get what you want most of the time.

Time heals. Some wounds take longer to heal than others. As time passes, your hurts, your injuries, and your mind and body will heal.

Develop a sense of humor. A sense of humor makes both the serious moments in life and the lighter moments more enjoyable. It is good to laugh at yourself as well as having the ability to enjoy another person's humor.

Lighten up!

From "Aim High : 101 Tips for Teens"