Adolescents will generally attend the first doctor visit with at least 1 parent if they are under 18 years of age. Some of the treatments that may be needed, for example, vaccines, require permission from an adult. During the initial visit, the adolescent and the doctor will get to know each other. The doctor will review the patient's health history and will discuss any current health issues. If the young patient is taking any medications or has recently taken medications, either prescription or non-prescription, the doctor will need to know about them as well. The doctor will do a complete physical exam during the first visit in most cases. If lab tests are needed, those will also be done at this time.
If an adolescent has sudden behavior changes, it should be taken seriously. While a certain amount of moodiness can be normal for a teenager, especially considering the hormonal changes occurring in the body, some changes are not normal and require help. If the young person has undergone major changes in their eating habits, sleeping patterns, moods, treatment of others, behavior in school, social behaviors, family behaviors, or any other major area of life, it's time to contact the pediatrician. There may be a medical cause behind the behavior, one that can be addressed with effective treatment that will bring the young person back to being themselves again.
Some young people will need additional help, for example, an adolescent may need to see a psychiatrist for mental disorders if those are present. Dr. Jean-Baptiste will refer the young patient to a highly experienced doctor who specializes in the field where they are in need of additional medical help.
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