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Well Child Visit At 15 To 17 Years
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
A well child visit is when your child sees a healthcare provider to prevent health problems. It is a different type of visit than when your child sees a healthcare provider because he is sick. Well child visits are used to track your child's growth and development. It is also a time for you to ask questions and to get information on how to keep your child safe. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them. Your child should have regular well child visits from birth to 17 years.
Where to take your child for well child visits:
It is best to find a medical home for your child. A medical home is a doctor's office or clinic where your child sees the same healthcare providers every time. A medical home will also keep your child's health records. The healthcare providers will get to know your child and your family so they can give him the best care. They will also make sure he receives vaccines on the recommended immunization schedule to protect him from diseases.
What happens during a well child visit at 15 to 17 years:
Ages 15 to 17 is also called late adolescence or early adulthood. Well child visits may change so your healthcare provider talks to your child without you. Your child's healthcare provider may do the following:
- Chart your child's height and weight
- Check your child's vision, hearing, and blood pressure
- Talk to you and your child about his physical activity, and time limits of less than 2 hours a day for TV, computers, or video games
- Check your child's teeth or tell you to take him to a dentist, and ask about your child's brushing and flossing routine
- Ask how much sleep your child gets each night and how well he is sleeping
- Check for problems with your child's spine
- Talk about puberty and the changes your child is going through while becoming an adult
- Check your child's skin for acne or changes in birthmarks, and talk to him about wearing sunscreen to prevent skin cancer
- Do breast and pelvic exams for girls and testicular exams for boys
- Talk to your child about seat belts, bicycle, motorcycle, and sports helmets, and water safety, such as not swimming alone
- Talk to your child about the health effects of smoking, drinking alcohol, and taking drugs
- Talk to your child about sex and how to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases
- Talk to your child about school, problems with any schoolwork or subjects, friendships, peer pressure, and bullying
- Look for signs of any emotional or mental problems in your child, such as depression
- Give your child any catch-up doses of the hepatitis B, hepatitis A, Tdap, MMR, chickenpox, or HPV vaccine, or a catch-up or booster dose of the meningococcal vaccine
Milestones of development your child may reach by 15 to 17 years:
Each child develops at his own pace. Your child might have already reached the following milestones, or he may reach them later:
- Menstruation by 16 years for girls
- Start driving
- Develop a desire to have sex, start dating, and identify sexual orientation
- Start working or planning for college or military service
Medical care that happens next for your child:
Your child's healthcare provider will talk to you about where your child should go for medical care after 17 years. He may continue to see the same healthcare providers until he is 21 years old.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.