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. I believe that now is a good time to catch up on adolescent health and wellness visits and missed immunizations.
The timing was perfect when I was asked to share about Unity™ Consortium, a non-profit dedicated to improving adolescent health through prevention and immunization. I had just recently brought my 12-year-old for her well-visit and immunizations and things are starting to feel normal again. I can finally catch my breath and relax a little, though there are still important thing to talk about and do.
Like many adolescents, my child’s annual well visit and immunizations were delayed in the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I was worried about exposure by going to a doctor’s office or pharmacy. I am so glad that it is safe to visit the doctor for preventative care now.
Why Adolescent Health & Well Visits are Important
There are some important and time-sensitive screenings and immunizations that preteens and teenagers need. Their bodies are going through so many changes during these years, so it is important for older kids to have regular doctor visits.
A decline in immunization rates results in increasing susceptibility to vaccine-preventable illness. This gap is even more pronounced for vulnerable populations including minority and lower-income families.
The CDC recommends vaccines to protect against serious illnesses including meningitis (2 vaccines), cancers caused by HPV, whooping cough, and flu.
Our Recent Well-Visit Experience
Recently at my child’s annual wellness visit, I learned that she was almost overdue for some important immunizations that the CDC recommends for 11-12 year olds.
I’m usually so on top of these things and our health insurance provider does a great job of reminding me when we are due for our annual visits. However, these have been unusual times. Irrational as it may be, I did let a little mom guilt settle in for not taking her to see the doctor sooner, but I quickly decided to show myself a some grace. Sometimes stuff happens. Crazy things like global pandemics happen and get in the way and we do the best that we can with what we’re dealt. Fortunately, it is now safe to go see a doctor for preventative care and I can check that box off.
Besides her annual flu shot, it had been a while since T needed any vaccinations. We were all caught up for the last couple years of grade school. Now that she is a preteen (which is so hard to believe!) there are 4 recommended vaccines that can prevent very serious diseases like meningitis and HPV cancers. Then, a couple of additional vaccines we will need to take care of around the age of 16.
During our well-visit, I was glad that our physician took the time to talk to T about the many changes that kids her age go through and the importance of good nutrition and hygiene. Our doctor also asked T some probing questions and spoke to us about mental health. This past year has been just as stressful for kids as it has adults.
Catch Up on Missed Adolescent Well-Visits & Vaccinations
Now is the perfect time to catch up on missed adolescent wellness visits and vaccinations. Well visits keep teens healthy.
Unity Consortium Recommends Taking Steps Now:
- schedule a wellness visit
- stay up-to-date on vaccines
- visit your healthcare professional
After spending the better part of last year doing virtual school and avoiding in-person contact with just about everyone, including our health care providers, I was glad to get my 12-year-old caught up on her annual wellness visit, immunizations and dental.
Have you also been afraid of visiting your doctor’s office or the pharmacy due to COVID exposure? Our physician’s office took great care in keeping us safe by doing things like advance screening, checking us in by phone, having us wait in the car until they were ready for us to come back and temperature checks at the door. I noticed the staff doing a great job of sanitizing everything before and after each patient. It all helped put me at ease.
I feel so much better now knowing that my child is all caught up on her well-child visit and immunizations. I hope that you too will be able to schedule your adolescent’s wellness checkup and get any missed vaccinations.
Vaccines may be needed for adolescents to return to in-person activities such as sports, summer camps, and school so don’t delay.
I love the work that Unity is doing to make information and resources available to families to help keep our kids healthy. They have so much helpful information on their website. Visit unity4teenvax.org to learn more.
Don’t wait. Vaccinate. Now is the time to catch up on adolescent health care visits!
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