Pimples. Monthly cycles. Peer pressure for substances, alcohol, or cigarettes. Surprising growth spurts — and not much in expected areas. Teenage years bring many health changes. Having a supportive medical crew is crucial. Thankfully, you can call an adolescent medicine specialist to guide you and your children going through puberty. Let’s learn more about what type of doctor specializes in healthcare for teenagers.
What is adolescent medicine?
A doctor for adolescents has specialized training to handle the physical and emotional challenges that adolescents often confront. They’re skilled in addressing concerns such as puberty, substance use, eating struggles, menstrual irregularities, mood swings, queries about sexuality, and issues within the family or school.
These professionals encompass physicians and other medical experts, such as nurse practitioners, collaborating closely to deliver comprehensive care. Consulting with an adolescent medicine specialist is an excellent means to support your child’s journey from youth to grown-up life.
Types of treatments these doctor for teens can provide
An adolescent medicine specialist offer thorough care and support for teenagers and young adults, addressing a range of concerns and conditions such as:
- Necessary physical assessments for driver’s permits, college applications, and sports engagement
- Sports-related injuries and orthopedic matters like scoliosis
- Challenges related to growth and development
- Immediate or chronic ailments, spanning from strep throat to asthma, diabetes, or cerebral palsy
- Headaches, chest discomfort, and other bodily pains
- Reproductive health and questions about sexuality
- Academic, learning, and concentration issues
- Nutrition, weight concerns, and eating disorders
- Guidance on preventing and managing substance use like drugs, alcohol, and tobacco
- Emotional well-being encompassing issues like depression, stress, anxiety, self-esteem, and sleep troubles
- Skin problems like acne and other conditions
According to state laws concerning teenagers’ rights and confidentiality, specific health matters tied to reproductive and mental health can be managed confidentially.
Reasons why you should see adolescent medicine specialists
Below are some benefits to seeing a doctor for adolescents:
Teens can find support from adolescent health experts when dealing with emotional and mental well-being concerns such as stress, anxiety, sleep difficulties, self-esteem, eating disorders, and similar challenges. These specialists aid teens in mastering emotional management techniques and can also facilitate connections with mental health professionals when needed.
They want to feel like they belong
As your child gets older, it’s natural for them to prefer spending time with peers who are closer to their age. Moreover, healthcare centers focused on teen health often create waiting areas that are cozy and welcoming.
Talk about sex and relationships
At times, teens might feel challenged discussing topics like sex, relationships, puberty, or substance use with the doctor they’ve known since childhood. However, it’s crucial to have these discussions with their healthcare provider for optimal care. Adolescent medicine specialists are skilled at addressing these subjects respectfully and in a way that suits their age.
Teens are familiar with their pediatrician giving them orders, such as eating more veggies or spending more time outdoors. However, Adolescent medicine specialists take a different approach. They discuss how behaviors impact health and guide teens in making their own health choices. These specialists also assist teens in recognizing and overcoming challenges to living healthily—like managing stress or eating well on a tight budget.
If they’re dealing with a chronic health condition
If your teenager has a long-term medical condition, they might be facing additional inquiries and hurdles during these changes. For instance, they might wonder how to stay active with friends or handle relationships while managing a disability. Some pediatricians might find it tricky to address these new concerns after focusing on the medical aspect for a while. An expert in adolescent health can provide guidance in tackling these questions.
Puberty isn’t going the right way
Adolescent health experts are there to help when puberty doesn’t happen at the usual times. Sometimes it’s too early, sometimes it’s too late. These experts know how to provide special care during these times.
What a typical visit may feel
When your teenager visits an adolescent medicine doctor, they will likely have more talking time compared to their previous doctors. They might even discuss matters that aren’t directly related to their initial reason for the visit.
These conversations help the doctor understand your teen’s background, so they can provide health advice and treatment tailored to their specific needs. Depending on the purpose of the visit, a physical exam might be done.
Adolescent medicine specialists usually aim to have private moments with their patients. This way, they can discuss confidential issues without family members present. Some doctors might even allow your teen to manage their appointments independently, without an adult accompanying them.
Certain adolescent medicine doctors have flexible schedules, ensuring they can allocate sufficient time for each patient. However, if your teen has many questions, it’s a good idea to mention this when scheduling the appointment.
Work with an adolescent medicine specialist to help your teen grow in the right direction
If you’re navigating the complexities of adolescence with your child, rest assured that specialized care is available to guide you through this transformative journey. Adolescent medicine specialists are uniquely equipped to address both the physical and emotional challenges that teenagers face. From puberty-related concerns to mental well-being, reproductive health, and more, these experts provide comprehensive support tailored to your child’s needs.
Whether it’s about emotional health, discussing sensitive topics, managing chronic conditions, or ensuring healthy development, adolescent medicine specialists offer invaluable guidance. Make the choice to empower your teenager with the care and knowledge they need to navigate this pivotal phase of life confidently. Schedule a visit with an adolescent medicine specialist today to pave the way for a healthier, happier transition into adulthood.