Your doctor and/or nurse will probably:
2. Check your teen's blood pressure and vision using standard testing equipment.
3. Ask questions, address concerns, and offer advice about your teen's:
Eating. Teens should eat three meals a day that include lean protein, whole grains, at least five servings of fruits and vegetables, and three servings of low-fat or nonfat dairy products. Limit foods and drinks that are high in sugar and fat.
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. Teens should aim for 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Encourage your teen to limit his or her screen time to no more than 2 hours daily, not including time spent on homework. Set a good example by limiting your own screen time and exercising daily.
Growth and development. By 17 years, it's common for teens to:
4. Perform a physical exam. The doctor will check for the signs of puberty and may perform a breast or testicular exam. A chaperone should be present during this part of the exam.
5. Update immunizations. Immunizations can protect people from serious 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 18 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
|Planned Parenthood Info for Teens This site from the Planned Parenthood Federation of America has information on relationships and sexual health for teens.|
|American Sexual Health Association This nonprofit organization is dedicated to preventing sexually transmitted diseases and offers hotlines for prevention and control of STDs.|
|National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) NHTSA is the government agency responsible for ensuring and improving automobile and traffic safety.|
|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.|
|SafeTeens.com SafeTeens.com offers information about Internet safety and homework help for teens.|
|National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy This site provides teen pregnancy facts, resources, and prevention tips.|
|National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information This organization provides resources and referrals related to drug and alcohol abuse. Call: (800) 729-6686|
|Adolescent Health Transition Project This is a health and transition resource for adolescents with special health care needs, chronic illnesses, and physical or developmental disabilities.|
|CDC: Pre-teen and Teen Vaccines CDC site provides materials in English and Spanish for parents, teens, pre-teens, and health care providers about vaccines and the diseases they prevent.|
|Quintessential Careers for Teens This site has job and career advice for teens, including part-time and summer employment.|
|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.|
|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?|
|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.|
|Making Sure Your Teen's Job Is Safe Many teens want to work a part-time job. Find out how to ensure safe employment for your son or daughter.|
|Growth and Your 13- to 18-Year-Old Kids entering puberty will undergo many changes in their developing bodies, which are often quite dramatic. Find out more about what to expect.|
|STDs In many ways teens today are growing up faster than ever. That's why it's important to talk to your child about sex, particularly sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).|
|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.|
|Giving Teens a Voice in Health Care Decisions Involving teens in their health care can help prepare them for managing it on their own as adults.|
|Medical Care and Your 13- to 18-Year-Old Regular visits help your teen's doctor keep track of changes in physical, mental, and social development. The doctor can also help your teen understand the importance of choosing a healthy lifestyle.|
|Rules of the Road for Teen Drivers When teens get their driver's license, parents should consider creating their own rules of the road beyond the relevant driving laws.|
|Helping Your Teen Decide What to Do After High School Helping to prepare your teen for life after high school is one of the most important tasks you will have as a parent.|
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