Annual exams can be utilized to assess the health and well-being of a patient and address any present complaints. Evaluating the state of adolescent health is especially important, as young people go through many changes during this period. Adolescent patients may experience alterations in their body as well as their social life. Moreover, some of them may feel uncomfortable discussing these issues with their peers and parents. Therefore, such medical examinations may help both parents and young patients to detect any problems or prevent their occurrence.
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Annual Exam Components
A yearly check-up can consist of several components. First of all, it is essential to assess the patient’s physical health. The rapid physical growth of patients during adolescence may reveal many health-related issues. Such data as weight and height are needed to calculate one’s body mass index and detect problems such as excess weight, obesity, or insufficient weight. Moreover, one should check the patient’s blood pressure and heart rate to exclude the issue of high or low blood pressure and heart-related conditions. Other parts of physical examination are also important (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2017). The physical examination of one’s skin, breast, and genitalia may provide more information and reveal some issues. The latter part of the check-up is especially crucial as many people of that age start becoming sexually active.
In the case of other problems, conversation with the patient plays a vital role in detecting various health issues. Thus, the next component of the examination is the interaction with the patient. Asking different questions may help the nurse to find and address the patient’s concerns. The patient is fourteen. Thus, the mother is not required to be present during the examination. Moreover, the patient may be uncomfortable to share private information with the nurse in front of his parents. Thus, it is possible to have parents present with the patient’s consent or if the patient is in danger (American College of Preventive Medicine, 2017). Conversation with the patient should include such topics as the patient’s physical growth, social life, academic performance, emotional well-being, and risk behavior.
Various blood and urine tests may be used as screening tools to detect any issues connected to possible alcohol or drug abuse. Moreover, one can use questionnaires to evaluate the responses of the patient and make appropriate conclusions.
Many approaches to health promotion can be used for adolescent patients. However, according to Coates, Petersen, and Perry (2013), the prevention of risk behaviors is crucial at that age. For example, alcohol and drug abuse may be a pressing problem that the patient is facing. Therefore, one needs to discuss this issue with the patient and provide some advice regarding the use of substances. According to Eldredge, Markham, Ruiter, Kok, and Parcel (2016), the nurse should evaluate the social life of the patient and address the possibility of mental pressure that the individual may be facing from his peers. DiClemente, Hansen, and Ponton (2013) note that any environmental conditions of drug use should be examined as well. It is essential to examine this issue and talk with the patient positively and ensure that drug and alcohol consumption is not needed in friendships. Moreover, the patient should remember that saying no is always an option.
This idea is important because drug and alcohol abuse can influence one’s academic performance and behavior (Busch et al., 2014). Furthermore, the patient is in a part of his life where he has more responsibility for his actions as well as more social pressure from teachers, parents, peers, and friends.
Annual check-ups for adolescents may allow patients and their parents to monitor the condition of young people’s growing bodies. Many components are included in these exams. However, they can be divided into two parts – physical examination and conversation. Health promotion is also necessary at that age due to adolescent patients having more duties and pressures.
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American College of Preventive Medicine. (2017). Adolescent wellness exam time tool. Web.
Busch, V., Loyen, A., Lodder, M., Schrijvers, A. J., van Yperen, T. A., & de Leeuw, J. R. (2014). The effects of adolescent health-related behavior on academic performance: A systematic review of the longitudinal evidence. Review of Educational Research, 84(2), 245-274.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2017) Health services for teens. Web.
Coates, T. J., Petersen, A. C., & Perry, C. (Eds.). (2013). Promoting adolescent health: A dialog on research and practice. New York, NY: Academic Press.
DiClemente, R. J., Hansen, W. B., & Ponton, L. E. (Eds.). (2013). Handbook of adolescent health risk behavior. New York, NY: Springer Science & Business Media.
Eldredge, L. K. B., Markham, C. M., Ruiter, R. A., Kok, G., & Parcel, G. S. (2016). Planning health promotion programs: An intervention mapping approach (4th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.