Your doctor and/or nurse will probably:
2. Check your teen's blood pressure using standard testing equipment. Examine spine for curvature. Examine your teen to determine sexual maturity and screen for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) if warranted.
3. Ask questions, address concerns, and offer advice about your teen's:
Eating. At this age, teens should begin making healthy food choices on their own. Explain that eating five servings of fruits and vegetables per day and avoiding sweet, salty, and fatty foods not only is better nutritionally, but also will support a healthy weight. Calcium and iron are important for supporting the growth spurts of adolescence. Aim for three daily servings of low-fat dairy products to provide 1,300 milligrams of calcium. One cup of low-fat milk has 300 milligrams of calcium. Include enough lean meats, poultry, and seafood in the diet to reach 8 milligrams of iron per day. One serving of beef has 2-3 milligrams of iron.
Sleeping. Teens generally need about 9 hours of sleep per night. Inadequate sleep is common during the teen years and can have negative effects on school and athletic performance. Changes to the circadian clock make teens want to stay up later, but early school start times can make it hard for them to get enough sleep. Establish a bedtime that allows for adequate sleep and encourage your teen to follow a relaxing bedtime routine.
Physical activity. Aim for 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Experts recommend limiting screen time, including TV, DVDs, video games, smartphones, tablets, and computers, to no more than 2 hours per day.
Growth and development. By age 14, it's common for teens to:
4. Update immunizations. Immunizations can protect kids from serious childhood illnesses, so it's important that your teen receive them on time. Immunization schedules can vary from office to office, so talk to your doctor about what to expect.
Here are some things to keep in mind until your next routine visit at 15 years:
These checkup sheets are consistent with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)/Bright Futures guidelines.
Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: July 2013
|National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence (NCADD) This organization provides education, information, and help in the fight against alcohol and other drug addictions. Call: (800) NCA-CALL|
|American Medical Association (AMA) The AMA has made a commitment to medicine by making doctors more accessible to their patients. Contact the AMA at: American Medical Association|
515 N. State St.
Chicago, IL 60610
|TobaccoFree.org This site includes links to online anti-smoking resources.|
|American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) The AAP is committed to the health and well-being of infants, adolescents, and young adults. The website offers news articles and tips on health for families.|
|Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance The mission of this group is to educate patients, families, professionals, and the public about depressive and manic-depressive illnesses.|
|American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) This site offers information on numerous health issues. The women's health section includes readings on pregnancy, labor, delivery, postpartum care, breast health, menopause, contraception, and more.|
|American Academy of Family Physicians This site, operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), provides information on family physicians and health care, a directory of family physicians, and resources on health conditions.|
|American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Bright Futures Bright Futures is a national health promotion and disease prevention initiative that addresses the health needs of growing children. To learn more, visit the website.|
|Sexual Development Changes become more dramatic and complex with the onset of puberty, and kids are likely to have lots of questions. These articles can help you become a trusted source of information, comfort, and support for your kids.|
|When Your Child Outgrows Pediatric Care Help your teen or young adult make the transition from pediatric health care to adult health care. Get tips on finding a new doctor and getting health insurance.|
|Fitness and Your 13- to 18-Year-Old Kids who enjoy exercise tend to stay active throughout their lives. Learn how to encourage fitness in your teen.|
|About Birth Control: What Parents Need to Know Talking to your kids about sex can be daunting. But discussing issues like abstinence, STDs, and birth control can help lower teens' risk of unintended pregnancy or contracting an STD.|
|Your Daughter's First Gynecology Visit The idea of going to the gynecologist may make your daughter feel nervous. Here's how to make her feel more comfortable.|
|Communication and Your 13- to 18-Year-Old Teens spend much of the day outside the home, but it's important that you take time every day to talk with your teen to share opinions, ideas, and information.|
|Helping Teens Learn to Drive Parents play an important role in helping teens practice their driving skills and develop confidence behind the wheel. Here's how to help your teen become a safe driver.|
|A Parent's Guide to Surviving the Teen Years You've lived through 2 AM feedings, toddler temper tantrums, and the back-to-school blues. So why is the word "teenager" causing you so much anxiety?|
|Helping Your Teen With Homework Parents can play a crucial role in helping teens succeed in school by lending a little help, support, and guidance, and by knowing what problems demand their involvement and which ones require them to hang back.|
|Growth and Your 13- to 18-Year-Old Kids entering puberty will undergo many changes in their developing bodies. Find out more about what to expect.|
|Sleep Problems in Teens Does your teen have trouble falling asleep at night? Is he or she sleepy during the day? Find out if it's just a normal part of adolescence, or if something else is to blame.|
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