Moms: Is Your Daughter Ready to Make the Switch from Ped to OB/GYN? - Ascension Wisconsin

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Published on October 17, 2016

Moms: Is Your Daughter Ready to Make the Switch from Pediatrician to OB/GYN?

Knowing when to make the switch from pediatrician to OB/GYN can be challenging. As young adults, it's important for girls to receive medical care focused on their unique needs. While some are comfortable with their pediatricians, others may feel "old" sitting in a waiting area designed for toddlers. It's up to mom to decide when the time is right to make the switch.

The American College of OB/GYNs recommends beginning well-woman visits with external exams only around age 15, and visits with internal exams starting at age 21. Girls with abnormal bleeding, painful periods or other problems associated with reproductive health may need a pelvic exam sooner.

"At these early exams, the most important thing is to develop a level of comfort and trust. We want girls to feel as though we are their partners, helping them be the healthiest they can be," says Dr. Nicole Sternitzky, Obstetrics/Gynecology. "This is a time to get a baseline on her breast, urological and reproductive health as well as bone structure to make sure everything is on the right track."

Tips for Making the Switch

  • Ask your daughter what type of doctor she would prefer. Male or female? Younger or older? Family medicine or OB/GYN?
  • Before sending her to your doctor, check to see if she is comfortable with that. Some girls might be hesitant to confide in someone who has a connection to their mother.
  • Allow her some time alone with the doctor. You want her to be completely honest and not withhold information that she is too embarrassed to share in your presence. In addition, alone time will allow her to recognize the doctor as an objective person she can talk to about any concerns she may have.
  • And you need to trust the caregiver to give your daughter information about important decisions that affect her health and well-being.

How to Find an OB/GYN

When you and your daughter are ready for her to make the switch to an OB/GYN, we can help! Easily search on our website or call Wheaton Direct at 1-888-994-3286.

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Moms: Is Your Daughter Ready to Make the Switch from Ped to OB/GYN?