For Teens

Complete attention to numerous aspects of a teen's health is provided at Hygeia Gynecology, often in conjunction with the patient's pediatrician. This includes focus on Breast and Bone health, menstrual function and pubertal development, prevention of STDs and teen pregnancy and maintenance of healthy body weight and nutritional status. Since the national ACOG guidelines recommend that a teen first visit a gynecologist between the ages of 13-15, it is important for this first gyn appointment to establish a foundation for lifelong wellbeing. Most young adolescents do NOT require an internal pelvic examination at this first visit, nor do they require a Pap smear of the cervix. At the first visit, a comprehensive history is obtained with special attention to relevant family history, emotional / psychological issues, nutritional and social factors. Extensive and open dialogue about risks of premature sexual activity is reviewed and preventative health measures are discussed. Counseling surrounding the administration of the HPV/cervical cancer vaccine is addressed and the optimal timing of this vaccine recommended. Note: please allow 1 hour for an initial adolescent gyn appointment.

 Breast Health

Learning about your breast from your early teenage years is very important. At my office, I will show you how you should examine your breasts, which is a skill you will need for the rest of your life! Common breast problems such as breast pain and breast cysts are explained. You will learn ways to achieve good breast health throughout your adolescence and adult years.

 

 Bone Health

Osteoporosis is a condition in which your bones lose their strength. Incredibly, this is now being considered a disease of childhood! Teens don’t actually get osteoporosis, but your chances of getting this condition later in life are strongly influenced by certain factors that can commonly arise during your teenage years. In my office, I will evaluate your bone health and teach you ways to build strong bones during the critical ages of 12-18. By focusing on increasing bone mass in your teens, you can enjoy good function of your skeletal system when you are in your 80’s!

 

 Menstrual Function

Your teen years are a time when periods and your hormones are just getting geared up for your life as an adult woman! Many teens have problems with their periods that range from extreme pain to irregularity. More more teens (and many adults for that matter!) do not understand what “normal” means, when it comes to periods. I will evaluate whether your periods are normal, and together, we will decide if treatment is recommended. Since your menstrual cycle is one very important measure of your body’s function and health, I will teach you how to understand your cycles, so you know what to expect each month. Great news!!! Most adolescents do not need a pelvic exam at their first visit to the gynecologist, so relax!

 

Jennifer Ashton MD