Ask the Health Educator: First Visit to TM

Question from July 11, 2013

Hello,
I was wondering about what would happen during my visit to Teen Matters if I were to get birth control. Would I have to take a pregnancy test? And if so, would it be the blood test or the regular HPT? I would like to come in sometime soon to talk about getting birth control.

Answer:

Hi! This is a great question, because many people wonder what will happen during their first visit to Teen Matters.

When a young lady comes in to start birth control, we try to keep her visit fairly short; it only takes about 30 minutes. First, she will meet with a clerk or Health Educator that will go over some basic information and have her complete a few forms. If a Health Educator is available, she will then answer any questions the patient may have about the different types of birth control available to help her decide which method will work best. There may be watch a short video on the different methods to help with this decision as well. Then, the nurse will call the patient back to her room. Every patient that starts birth control will be tested for pregnancy, Gonorrhea, and Chlamydia. All of these tests are performed through a urine sample.

This makes the first visit much easier because there is NO EXAM, meaning, the patient does not have to get undressed during her first visit (unless she is having symptoms of an infection). The pregnancy test results are available within a few minutes and if the results are negative, the patient will be given the birth control that she and nurse decided on.

The Gonorrhea and Chlamydia test results take about two weeks and the patient would have to come back into the clinic to obtain them. If either of those results is positive, the patient can return for additional testing and treatment. Most patients return in 3 months for their birth control refill and at that time they will receive a full exam where they will be tested for Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, HIV, receive a breast exam, and get more birth control. Although this visit does require the patient to get undressed, it is only performed once a year! All of these exams, tests, and birth control are FREE! We can even text patients a reminder when it’s time for their next appointment! We hope to see you soon!

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