fbpx

FOR CHILDREN AGES 12 TO 18: What to Expect at the Yearly Wellness Exam

Adolescence is a time of growth and change, both physically and mentally. Annual well exams are vital in this age group to not only monitor their health, but also their well-being. Once in high school, student athletes typically need physician clearance, so please bring any necessary forms with you.

1. The annual wellness exam focuses on your child’s overall health, growth and development.
If you have a list of other concerns that may have come up over the past year, please make a separate appointment for these issues as soon as they come up. Waiting can mean that the potential issue might get worse and it’s better to address it right away. The annual wellness visit is meant to focus on your child’s overall health.
Tip:
Help your child learn to see their CPCMG pediatrician as a partner and resource for maintaining their health. A positive relationship with their doctor will help foster trust and faith in the future.

2. We’re going to check their vital signs.
All patients will have their height and weight checked. They will also have their blood pressure and hearing checked. Vision is checked using the vision chart. Checking your child’s vitals will help your CPCMG pediatrician track their growth and health.
Tip:
Let your child know that these tests help the doctor learn about their health.

3. Depending on their age, your child might be due for a booster or recommended vaccination.
Don’t promise your child that they won’t get a shot unless you have confirmed this information before the appointment. Promising “no shots” can set you up for a return visit and leave you feeling like you lied to your child. There may be boosters or vaccines as they get closer to adulthood that you may not realize they need.
Tip:
If your child asks if they will get a vaccine, say you aren’t sure but remind them that vaccines will protect them from getting sick.

4. Your child will need to get undressed during their well child exam.
This helps the pediatrician examine the skin, spine and overall physical appearance of your child. Your child’s underwear will stay on until their genitals need to be examined. Your CPCMG pediatrician will look for pubertal development as well as any other issues (hygiene or dermatologic problems). This part of the exam is over quickly.
Tips:
• Let your child know that this part of the exam is important and won’t last long.
• Approach this topic matter of factly, letting your child know that you also have the same checkup as a grown up.
• Let them know that they are entitle to privacy and you will step out of the room for this part of the exam.
• A chaperone will be provided at your request.

5. You’ll be answering questions you might not expect.
In addition to asking about your child’s physical health, CPCMG pediatricians will ask about development, behaviors, habits, school, stress, and home environment. These important questions are designed to identify anything we may need to talk about (and sometimes they’re required to be asked by your insurance company).

In addition to asking about the questions above, your teen will be screened for depression and asked about anxiety, trauma, sex, and tobacco/drugs/alcohol use. These will be discussed confidentially so expect your teen to have one on one time with their pediatrician. This is a good opportunity for older teens to practice for doing visits alone as an adult.

Tips:
• When completing the pre-visit questionnaire, please answer honestly. Knowing the true picture helps CPCMG pediatricians work with you to set your child up for success.
• Your child will also be asked to fill out their own questionnaires so be prepared for the extra time this requires.
• Save time! Pre-visit questionnaires can frequently be done in advance using MyChart – this makes your office visit more efficient.

After your child’s wellness exam, celebrate their good health! Plan a fun activity after the exam or make time for a special treat.

If your child is due for their annual wellness exam, please use your MyChart account to schedule an appointment or call your CPCMG pediatrician’s office. See you soon!