This post was sponsored by Unity™ Consortium as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
It’s been an eventful year, and seeing my middle child turn into a big brother, plus seeing my oldest child become the older sister of two brothers has been amazing. Scarlet adores her baby brother and while I can still easily remember her adorable quirks and milestones at his young age, she has matured beautifully. She thrives on in-person learning, is always surrounded by friends, and has a strong sense of self. I find myself so proud of how kind, well spoken, and determined she is. I notice things, like when she’s talking to her piano teacher during lessons. Or how she speaks to her loved ones. And recently, I loved hearing her talk to our pediatrician at her annual well visit. I had put off her appointment, because of everything that’s happening.
Don’t Wait. Vaccinate. What to Expect at Your Adolescent’s Annual Well Visit:
First of all, why is it important to make that call?:
Due to the pandemic, adolescents and young adults (AYA) have had a dramatic drop in well visit and vaccination rates. I admit that even we delayed our appointments. Then I had the baby, and I scheduled his regular and numerous well visits and vaccinations, like clockwork, and I realized I should do that for my two older kids as well. So, off to the doctor we went! The thing is, these well visits help keep adolescents healthy. At these important appointments, they receive time-sensitive screenings and immunizations they need. It is safe to visit your doctor or pharmacy for healthcare, because healthcare providers take ample measures to ensure patient safety.
Well visits keep kids healthy:
And now is the perfect time to catch up on these missed well visits and vaccinations. We did so because with a third kid in the mix, I wanted to make sure I was still devoting time and care to the older two. I also made this call because the kids were about to return to full-time in-person learning and the school nurse needed those updated medical forms. It’s not just school, though. Pretty soon, there will be sports, after school activities, and then summer camp as well. It’s about keeping my kids healthy, but also making sure they are doing their part to help keep others protected as well. At Scarlet’s age, the CDC recommends she gets vaccines to protect against serious illnesses, like meningitis, cancers caused by HPV, whooping cough, flu, etc.
What to expect at the appointment:
- They will check your child’s height, weight, BMI, and overall growth curves.
They will also check hearing and vision, and blood pressure.
There will be a conversation about eating, sleeping, and exercise.
For adolescents, there may be a conversation about puberty.
There will also be a physical exam, where the doctor looks at skin, listens to heart and lungs, and examines the child’s back for curvature of the spine.
We had a little talk about personal safety and body safety too.
And then it’s immunization time. Scarlet was due for four vaccines, which she got all at once.
It’s possible your doctor will order some tests. We had blood drawn because of Scarlet’s low BMI, but were able to get a weight recheck a month later and the doctor was happy.
I’m really excited to introduce my partnership with Unity, as they are a non-profit organization that unites diverse groups around a common passion – the imperative to protect adolescents and young adults against all vaccine-preventable diseases to support lifelong health. Social media can plant seeds of doubt about vaccines, and Unity has an overall mission to help parents keep well visit appointments, and to keep current with their vaccinations too.
The thing is, I didn’t know what to expect at her recent appointment last month and I was nervous. Perhaps I was even more nervous than she was. I’m so glad we went through with it, and I’m even more glad she’s current with her exams and vaccinations, because those records very much matter for school, activities, and camp. At the time I was nervous to hear about her weight gain, or lack thereof, just because of my own childhood experiences with being slim. And I was also juggling a wiggly baby through the exam, while Cassidy stayed home with Des. I wish I had known what to expect, because it would have made me feel better. And so I’m telling YOU what to expect, because I think it’s important. You can be there for your adolescents, and hey, maybe they’ll even let you hold their hands while they get their immunizations. It can happen!