When should my Daughter visit the Gynecologist?

She’s growing up!

Making an appointment with the gynecologist for your daughter can be difficult. She’s your baby, your little girl, and the gynecologist seems like a very grown up doctor. PAP smears are not recommended until the age of 21,but you might be surprised to learn that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommend an initial visit between the ages of 13 and 15.

The initial reproductive health visit provides an excellent opportunity for the obstetrician–gynecologist to start a patient–physician relationship, build trust, and counsel patients and parents regarding healthy behavior while dispelling myths and fears. The scope of the initial reproductive health visit will depend on the individual’s need, medical history, physical and emotional development, and the level of care she is receiving from other health care providers.

Unless your daughter is experiencing problems or is sexually active, this visit will only include a general health exam and discussion of development. It serves to establish a relationship with the doctor and allows her to become comfortable sharing personal information.

If your daughter will need a pelvic exam at her first visit, she may be feeling nervous or embarrassed. Explaining why the visit is important to her health and answering any questions that she may have will help to ease her anxiety.

Seeing the gynecologist should be treated as an important part of your daughter’s overall health. She will receive the most accurate information in a confidential setting. No matter why you schedule the appointment, be confident that you are making the best choice for your daughter.

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