Posted on: 25 May 2021
The middle school years can be a bit awkward. Your child is really beginning to think for themselves and make independent decisions, and yet, they are still quite immature and in need of guidance from their parents. It's important to keep this balance in mind when you take your middle schooler to the pediatrician. Here are some tips for a productive, less-awkward doctor's visit when your child is this age.
Talk to them beforehand about being honest.
Middle schoolers are typically at a stage where their bodies are changing and growing fast, and they can feel a little uncomfortable about this. As such, they may not be as honest as they could be with the pediatrician. Talking to your child about this beforehand can help. Explain to them that the doctor is a professional, and they can only do their job and care for your child's health if your child is honest with them. Tell your child there's no reason to be embarrassed about their body or anything it does, especially in front of the doctor.
Let them go into the exam room alone if they prefer.
At this stage, your child may start to feel a bit uncomfortable about undressing in front of you. They may also start to feel a bit embarrassed answering questions about sexual development and activity in front of you. But then again, some kids may still want the comfort of their parents at this stage. It really depends on the child. So, the best approach is to give your middle schooler a choice. Let them decide whether or not you accompany them in the exam room. You can always compromise and join them for the second half of the visit so you can answer questions the doctor may have for you and better listen to the doctor's advice.
Find out if a sports physical is needed.
Middle school is when many kids start playing sports in school. If your child will be participating in sports, check with the school about the sports physical requirement. Ask when the physical will need to be done to qualify your child. This way, you might be able to have the sports physical done on the same day as your child's general medical visit, which will save you another trip to the pediatrician.
Once your child enters middle school, things start changing fast. With the tips above, though, you can make sure they keep getting the medical care they need.Share