Before the Visit
Before the Visit: How to Prepare
BOOK IT: Schedule an annual checkup.
CHECK IT: Know what an annual checkup covers. Besides screening for health issues and providing immunizations for the prevention of vaccine-preventable diseases (VPDs), the doctor may discuss emotional concerns. This is important, as a national survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases, with support from Pfizer, found that 75% of teens reported that emotional well-being is important to their physical health.
Topics that may be covered in the checkup include:
- Physical growth and development
- Healthy eating and exercise
- Social and academic performance and concerns
- Emotional well-being, such as stress, coping, mental health, and sexuality
- Difficult decisions involving alcohol use, substance abuse, and sexual activity
- Safety issues, including violence and injury prevention
WRITE IT: Consider jotting down questions in advance.That time flies by quickly! Going in prepared can help ensure all of your questions are addressed.
Encourage your teen to write down questions:Your teen might be timid or embarrassed when it comes to asking health-related questions. This step can help him or her prepare, so that his or her questions can be addressed.
Ensure your teen understands patient/physician confidentiality:
Assure your teen that you plan to leave the room for a portion of the
visit to give him or her some privacy, and that it is important
he or she speak candidly with the health care provider.