resource-teens twincity pediatrics


As you continue to grow and change, you will have new health needs. These changes can be confusing and leave you wondering what is happening to your mind and body. You may have questions about these changes and how you should take care of yourself.  We are here to help you stay healthy and answer your questions. We see many patients until they are between 18-20 years old. When you reach this age, we will discuss how to transition to physicians who can care for you as an adult.

Your pediatrician can answer questions about:

  • Eating right
  • Your height and weight
  • Exercise and sports
  • Acne
  • Dating
  • School performance
  • Alcohol and other drugs
  • Other concerns that you may have

Our Discussions Will Be Between Us, Whenever Possible

Once patients are 12-13 years old, we will speak with you and your parents at your check-up and also ask you to spend some time alone with your pediatrician. What you talk about during these visits will remain confidential. This way you will begin to learn how to take care of your own health.

As our patient, we respect your privacy. However, your parents may be concerned about your health and well being. Your pediatrician will keep them informed of extreme situations, for example, if your life or someone else's is in danger. In most cases, the information you share with us will stay between us.

MyChart Access for Tweens and Teens

As our patients grow older, access to MyChart also changes.

  • Under the age of 11, parents or legal guardians have full proxy access to their child's MyChart account, and the child has no access.
  • Between the ages of 12 and 15, children can be given their own MyChart activation code at the discretion of their provider, giving the child access to his or her chart. Parents can have limited proxy access to their child's account and can request appointments, see or edit the child's administrative information and review or print immunization records. Both the parent and the child may send private messages to the child's provider via Mychart.
  • After the age of 16, parents can no longer have proxy access, and the teenager has the same access as an adult.
  • For children with any medical condition that prevents him or her from making health care decisions, speak with your childs provider directly, you may still qualify for creating a MyChart account. 

Yearly Check-Up Recommended for Teens

We recommend that you come in once each year for a check-up.  Our annual checkups for teens are composed of the following elements:

  1. Brief interview with adolescent and parent (if present)
  2. Expanded interview and physical exam with adolescent only
  3. Laboratory tests as indicated (for example, guidelines require us to check cholesterol levels on teenagers)
  4. Wrap up session with adolescent and parent

The interview focuses on home, school/education, activities, friendships, diet/nutrition, sexual health/development, and mental health. If concerns with specific academic, emotional, physical, and/or social issues are identified in the physical exam and evaluation, a follow-up appointment will be recommended to continue appropriate evaluation and management.

When To Make an Appointment

Beyond your annual physical, you should also make an appointment to see us when you are sick or concerned about what is happening to your body. Physical growth may also trigger changes in how you think and feel.  Your body will go through a big growth spurt during puberty. You may want to discuss things like how tall you will be, is your sexual development normal, should you worry about your weight, or are you having problems with your menstrual periods.  You may feel sad, angry, or nervous at times. These are all things you can discuss openly and freely with your physician.

Sports and School Physicals

During a sports physical we focus on health issues that are important to sports participation. We recommend that you schedule your sports physical at least 6-8 weeks before you are scheduled to begin practice or try-outs. This way if we encounter a problem that may limit participation we can thoroughly evaluate it before the sports season begins.

Referrals to Other Doctors

If you have a medical problem that will require you to see a different type of physician, we will refer you to a specialist who can help. A referral may involve an ophthalmologist (eye doctor) for visual problems, psychologist for stress or depression, physical therapist for injury rehabilitation, or other physicians to address your special needs.