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Teen Health

Features Related to Teen Health

  1. Slim Chances: The Risks of Being Too Thin

    My patient Cindy had always been a star student, but when she turned thirteen, the stress of adolescence became too much for her. Her parents were splitting up, and Cindy’s mother was struggling with self-esteem issues. She constantly criticized both herself and Cindy for not looking their best. Mea

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  2. Painful Periods

      Not a day goes by when a patient doesn’t come in for help with cramps, aches, and other period-related pain. That’s not surprising. Studies show that 60 to 92 percent of teenage girls have painful periods. So if you’re dealing with pain, know you’re not alone. About 15 percent of girls have pain t

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  3. Period Problems

      It’s a rare woman who gets through her life without a cramp, pain, or other period problem. Cramps, aches, irregular bleeding, and other menstrual issues are the top reasons that new teenage patients come to see me. I tell them that most period problems start with hormones, which affect your whole

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  4. Smoke Signals: What Your Cigarette Says About You

    About a million years ago—like, in the 60s and 70s—smoking was supposed to make you seem cool, sophisticated, and worldly. That image is total history. In movies and TV shows today it’s almost always the bad guy that smokes, not the hero. Today smoking doesn’t say “I’m cool.” Instead it gives off th

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  5. Your Healthy Weight: Body Mass Index

      With more body types than car models out there, it’s not always obvious what a healthy weight might be. So doctors look at the ratio of your height and weight, then compare it to other people like you to see if you’re in the healthy zone. This system is called the Body Mass Index. It’s an easy cal

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  6. Where's Your Spot on the Range?

    Before you look at the chart below, repeat after me: “Normal is a range. Being outside the range doesn’t mean there’s a problem—but I should see a doctor.” Normal Not Normal Bleeding lasts 1 to 7 days. Bleeding lasts longer than 7 days. Cycles (the time between Day 1 of one period and Day 1 of the n

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  7. Suffering is Out: What You Can Do

      Even in normal periods, your monthly cycle can affect a lot more than your uterus and vagina. Some symptoms are easy to explain. Cramps, for instance, happen because your uterus contracts when it sheds its lining (called the endometrium)—similar to the way it contracts during labor. No wonder it h

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  8. The Pill: Myths and Facts

      My patient Lori wasn’t having much luck with the prescription-strength NSAID drug or the complementary remedies she tried, so I suggested oral hormones. She hesitated. “This’ll sound dumb,” she told me, “but I really don’t want to gain weight.” “Don’t worry, that’s just a myth,” I told her. Lori’s

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  9. Talking to Your Boyfriend: Practice Makes Perfect

    One of the best tips I give my patients who want to delay sexual activity— but aren’t sure how to resist temptation—is to be prepared. Anticipate the obstacles that may pop up in your path and make a firm plan to deal with them. Preparation is key. Your plan might be as simple as figuring out how to

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  10. Just a Bad Day? Or a Mood Disorder?

      We all get in a bad mood sometimes (I sure do—just ask my family!). But most of the time we get over it. The good news is, as you become more mature, you also get smarter about what helps you get out of a bad mood. One patient of mine realized that she got bitchy whenever she stopped exercising—no

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