Dr. M.J. Bazos, MD, Patient Handout
16 Year Old Anticipatory Guidance
• Get adequate sleep.
• Exercise vigorously at least three times per week. Encourage friends and family members to exercise. Discuss with the health professional or your coach athletic conditioning, weight training, fluids, and weight gain or loss.
• Limit television viewing to an average of one hour per day.
• Wear a seat belt while driving or riding in the car. If you are driving, insist that your passengers wear seat belts. Follow the speed limit. Learn how to swim.
• Do not drink alcohol, especially while driving, boating, or swimming. Plan to have a designated driver if drinking.
• Protect yourself from skin cancer by putting sunscreen on before you go outside for long periods of time. Avoid tanning salons. Never tan at more than one salon if you do use tanning beds.
• Test smoke detectors in the home to ensure that they work properly. Change batteries yearly.
• Always wear a helmet when on a motorcycle, in an all-terrain vehicle, or riding a bicycle. Even with a helmet, motorcycles and all-terrain vehicle are very dangerous. Wear appropriate safety gear at work and follow job safety procedures.
• Avoid high noise levels, especially in music headsets.
• Develop skills in conflict resolution, negotiation, and dealing with anger constructively. Learn techniques to protect yourself against physical, emotional, and sexual abuse, including rape by either strangers or acquaintances. Seek help if physical or sexual abuse occurs or is threatened. Identify a supportive adult who can give you accurate information about sex. Get accurate information about birth control and sexually transmitted diseases. Having sexual feelings is normal, but having sex should be a well thought out decision. Do not have sex if you do not want to. Not having sexual intercourse is the safest way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV infection and AIDS. Learn about ways to say no to sex. If you are engaging in sexual activity, including intercourse, ask the health professional for an examination and discuss methods of birth control. Learn about and practice safe sex. Limit the number of partners, and use latex condoms and other barriers correctly. If you are confused or concerned about your sexual feelings (for the same or opposite sex), talk to a trusted adult or the health professional.
• Do not smoke , use smokeless tobacco, drink alcohol, or use drugs, diet pills, or steroids. Do not become involved in selling drugs. If you smoke, find out about smoking cessation programs. If you use drugs or alcohol, ask for help (e.g., a substance abuse treatment program). Avoid situations where drugs or alcohol are easily available. Support your friends who choose not to use tobacco, alcohol, drugs, steroids, or diet pills.
• Respect the rights and needs of others. Serve as a positive ethical and behavioral role model. Follow family rules, such as those for curfew or driving. Share in household chores.
• Do not carry or use a weapon of any kind. Avoid firearms except under the supervision of an adult.
• Anger control programs should be learned and practiced. Start to develop life habits such as creating goals and plans to obtain your goals. Discuss your life goals with your parents, trusted adults and your health professional. Develop the traits of good character. These traits are learned, not inherited. Practice honesty, trustworthiness, self-discipline and citizenship; these lead to integrity.
• If you do not have a savings plan, develop one and practice it.
• You are old enough to evaluate and choose your spiritual or religious character, do so and practice it daily.