An annual physical exam provides a unique opportunity for your kid’s doctor to address any developmental, emotional, or social issues that he/she may have. As their bodies change and develop, teenagers may have a lot of questions about the developments, peer influence, sexual activity, drugs, and other matters that are not adequately addressed at home. Getting proper, professional advice at this point in their lives will allow them to strike a balance between home life, school, extracurricular activities, sports, and other interests.
Physical exams are important to prepare active students for sports, camp, and school. They help to identify potential problems in the physical wellbeing of the student to reduce the risk of injury and costly treatments. Physical checkups are meant to not only ensure optimal physical wellbeing, but also provide an opportunity to obtain wellness guidance and advice, discuss diet and exercise options, and measure BMI for all-rounded growth.
When completing a physical assessment, the doctor may use different techniques including:
- Inspection – This is the process of visually examining a patient and observing any unusual elements, such as posture, smells, movement, or shapes.
- Palpation – After the medical history review, the physician may instruct the child to lie back on the table and physically examine different parts of they body using the hands to check for any unusual feel.
- Percussion – This technique is used to assess the condition of internal organs by checking their tenderness and evaluating the amount of fluid in the internal cavities. It is usually done by lightly tapping directly on a specific body part while watching the patient’s facial expression for signs of discomfort (direct percussion).
- Auscultation – This technique involves the use of a stethoscope to listen for the heart, lung, and bowel sounds. The diaphragm is used to find high-pitched sounds, and the bell to listen to low-pitched sounds.
Regular physical exams with a single doctor can help you keep track of your kid’s transition from childhood to puberty and even adulthood. The continuity helps the doctor identify emerging problems while relating any unusual problems with past injuries, illnesses, and vaccinations for optimal health.