Health Information and Tools > Patient Care Handouts >  Routine Checkup - Tips for Teens: Care Instructions
Facebook Tweet Share

Main Content

Routine Checkup - Tips for Teens: Care Instructions

Your Care Instructions

Being a teen can be exciting and tough. You are finding your place in the world. And you may have a lot on your mind these days too—school, friends, sports, parents, and maybe even how you look. Some teens begin to feel the effects of stress, such as headaches, neck or back pain, or an upset stomach. To feel your best, it is important to start good health habits now.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

Staying healthy can help you cope with stress or depression. Here are some tips to keep you healthy.

  • Make physical activity a part of your daily life. Experts recommend that teens be active at least 1 hour every day. You can be active in smaller blocks of time that add up to 1 hour or more each day.
    • Walk to do errands, visit a friend, or to the bus stop or school.
    • Go bike riding or skating or play a team sport.
  • Choose exercises that on 3 days of the week:
    • Make you breathe harder and your heart beat much faster.
    • Make your muscles stronger. You could try lifting weights.
    • Make your bones stronger. For example, you could run, jump rope, or play basketball.
  • Try cutting back on time spent on TV or video games each day.
  • Eat a variety of vegetables and fruits each day. Try easy-to-grab vegetables and fruits like baby carrots, celery sticks, apples, oranges, and grapes.
  • Choose water first and make it your drink of choice. If you drink soda or juice, try slowly cutting back to 1 can or small cup a day.
  • Choose cheese, yogurt, and skim or low-fat milk each day to get the calcium you need. If you cannot eat milk products, you can get calcium from calcium-fortified products such as orange juice, soy beverages, and tofu. Milk and fortified soy beverages also provide vitamin D.
  • The decision to have sex is a serious one that only you can make. Not having sex is the best way to prevent HIV, STIs (sexually transmitted infections), and pregnancy.
  • If you do choose to have sex, condoms and birth control can increase your chances of protection against STIs and pregnancy.
  • Talk to an adult you feel comfortable with. Confide in this person and ask for his or her advice. This can be a parent, a teacher, a coach, or someone else you trust.

Healthy ways to deal with stress

  • Get 9 to 10 hours of sleep every night.
  • Eat healthy meals.
  • Go for a long walk.
  • Dance. Shoot hoops. Go for a bike ride. Get some exercise.
  • Talk with someone you trust.
  • Laugh, cry, sing, or write in a journal.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • You feel life is meaningless or think about killing yourself.

Talk to a counsellor or doctor if any of the following problems lasts for 2 or more weeks.

  • You feel sad a lot or cry all the time.
  • You have trouble sleeping or sleep too much.
  • You find it hard to concentrate, make decisions, or remember things.
  • You change how you normally eat.
  • You feel guilty for no reason.

Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.