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How to Navigate Sensitive Health Conversations with Your Teen

Navigating Teen Sexual Health
Posted at 1:24 PM, Sep 05, 2023

BRIGHAM CITY, Utah – As teenagers continue to grow and develop, it is a good idea for parents to talk with them about navigating their sexual health, including young women who have not yet visited an OB/GYN. C. Annie Overson, CNM is a Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner and Certified Nurse-Midwife practicing at MountainStar Medical Group - Brigham City who talked Tuesday about how best to handle the topic on FOX13’s The PLACE.

When it comes to teenage daughters, Overson said, “Choosing a provider is important, especially for the first visit. I suggest sitting down and talking with your daughter about what the visit might look like and then explore the options together.”

She added, “Approaching the idea by explaining options, then allowing autonomy and choice, will likely empower the girl enough to gain ownership in the process.”

Circumstances for which a teenaged girl may consider seeing an OB/GYN – whether for the first time or subsequent times afterward – include:

· Abnormal or irregular menstrual cycles

· Possible ovarian cyst pain or issues

· Developing early or late

· Sexual activity

 “Young females under the age of 21 should begin seeing a provider as soon as the young woman feels ready to begin talking about her period, female maturation, emotional health, and relationships. For my young patients, I value building relationships and gently approaching vulnerable topics slowly over time to allow the person to feel comfortable as we eventually begin doing exams and talking about possibly uncomfortable topics,” Overson said.

“I have girls who are as young as 10 or 11 begin seeing me because of heavy or painful periods and/or emotional health concerns; I’ve even had a couple of girls who don’t have that mother figure in their lives and the father doesn’t feel comfortable or doesn’t know how to talk with their girls about their reproductive health – discussing everything from menstrual cycles to using tampons,” she continued.

Although a lot of young women (and adult women, for that matter) may be afraid to see an OB/GYN because they’re fearful of a pelvic exam, Overson says you don’t always have to go through that exam on your first visit.

“I love having a visit where we just establish care and create a plan. Then, when the person returns for their next visit, they have met me and are aware of what might take place at the exam,” Overson explained.

The women’s health services offered at MountainStar Healthcare’s Brigham City clinic include, but are not limited to:

· Abnormal Pap smears diagnosis and management

· Annual gynecologic exams

· Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy

· Birth control

· Breast exams

· Cancer screening

· Endometrial ablation

· Endometriosis care

· Hydrothermal ablation

· Hysteroscopy

· Infertility treatments

· In-office ablation

· In-office ultrasound

· Laparoscopic surgeries

· Loop electrical excision procedure (LEEP)

· Mammography scheduling

· Menopause management

· Treatment for bladder control issues

· Treatment of pelvic pain

MountainStar Medical Group–Brigham City, affiliated with Brigham City Community Hospital, provides comprehensive women's healthcare and general surgery. General surgeons, obstetrician gynecologists (OB/GYNs) and breast health specialists there provide a lifetime of care. From breast cancer screening to menopause management, there are experts who can manage every stage of a woman's healthcare needs, as well as general surgery treatments and minimally-invasive procedures for men, women and children.

About Annie Overson
Annie Overson worked as a labor and delivery nurse at Brigham City Community Hospital from 2001-2014. She graduated from the University of Utah in 2014 with her doctorate degree in nursing.

Overson offers obstetric and gynecologic services for women including prenatal care, delivery and postpartum care for normal pregnancies, annual exams and preventive care, which encompasses contraception management, menopausal and perimenopausal management and STD detection and treatment.

Passionate about protecting the normalcy of pregnancy and birth, Overson promotes positive outcomes for mothers and babies. She believes in empowering women to make decisions and to be in charge of their healthcare. She acknowledges that all women come from different backgrounds, each with different experiences that have shaped who they are and values that address the physical, emotional and sexual health needs of women. Annie is particularly passionate about adolescent reproductive health and addressing teen pregnancy.

MountainStar Medical Group at Brigham City Community Hospital
970 South Medical Drive Suite 202
Brigham City, UT 84302

For more information, visit MountainStarBrigham.com or call (435) 695-CARE.