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Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine

Adolescence is a developmental period marked by physical, psychological and social changes that include achieving adult stature and sexual maturity, increase in intellectual capacity, a search for identity and a place in one’s society, increased independence and autonomy, and  development of relationships with significant others.

Adolescents and young adults can often feel significant pressures from their peers, social media, and other external pressures. It is a time when some adolescents and young adults  run the risk of falling into the gap as unlike their young years – are not going to the doctor frequently – but may  have real and significant health issues which need the attention of a physician.  While most adolescents make this transition without major problems, they need a significant amount of reassurance, guidance and support to make the right decisions. The practice of adolescent medicine was created to address the age specific health issues that arise during the second decade of life. Book your appointment online to schedule a visit with a CareMount Medical primary care provider.

Providers who specialize in adolescent medicine focus on the following diseases or issues, but are not limited to these:

  • Sexually transmitted disease (working with specialists in pediatric endocrinology, obstetrics and gynecology, immunology,  infectious diseases,  urology and reproductive medicine)
  • Unintended pregnancy (working with specialists in obstetrics and gynecology, especially in neonatology and maternal-fetal medicine; many adolescent pregnancies– though not all – are medically risky or high-risk cases)
  • Birth control (access to prescription or non-prescription contraceptive methods)
  • Sexual activity (such as sexual intercourse and sexual abuse)
  • Substance abuse
  • Menstrual disorders (such as amenorrhea, dysmenorrhea and dysfunctional uterine bleeding)
  • Acne (working with specialists in dermatology who treat adolescents)
  • Eating disorders like anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa (working with nutritionists and dietitians, and also specialists in pediatric mental health counseling, clinical psychology, and pediatric psychiatry, who work with adolescents)
  • Certain mental illnesses including  anxiety disorders, major depression, thoughts of suicide, , bipolar disorder, and certain types of schizophrenia; working  in concert with mental health counselors, clinical psychologists, and  psychiatrists
  • Delayed or precocious puberty (often working with specialists in pediatric endocrinology, urology, and gynecology)

When to see your doctor

Adolescence is also the time when a number of adult illnesses may be diagnosed for the first time. It is a time when adolescents need to start the process of taking on more responsibility for their health and ensuring they go onto live healthy adult lives in the future.  While many teens continue getting care from their general pediatrician thru the age of 21 years – there are many who are ready for and would feel more comfortable in a more adult style medical practice beginning in their teenage years.

Older teens who have physical or developmental challenges  may need special support in confronting their unique challenges as they begin the transition to adulthood. For those children who have a chronic disease-  an adolescent medicine specialist bridges the gap from pediatrician to adult primary care and is able to care for the young adult through his/her teen years into adulthood, working in collaboration with the appropriate specialists. Coping with a disease such as diabetes or an immune system disorder, for example, is difficult for anyone. When your child is going through puberty and dealing with growing up, this can be especially challenging. We can help your child with sticking to treatment plans and dealing with the physical, mental and social stresses of chronic illness. At CareMount Medical, our adolescent medicine specialists are specially trained to help teens with issues related to their growth, provide preventive care, and help with the management of acute and chronic illness from physical ones.