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August 11, 2017 06:13 PM

Back To School Doctor Visits

As you prepare your kids for heading back school, it might be time to head back to the doctor's office as well.

Doctors suggest children under 18-years-old get a well being check at least once a year. We find out why these exams are so important before school starts, especially if your child plans to play any sports.
As you prepare your kids for heading back school, it might be time to head back to the doctor's office as well.

Doctor: "Do you feel safe at school?"
Patient: "Yep."
Doctor: "Awesome." 

This may not sound like the type of physical you grew up with, but doctors now are looking into much more than just heartbeat and reflexes.

"For instance, I asked about school performance. I asked about driving safety, sports and then grades and different things like that," said Nicholas Torbert, Avera Health Pediatrician. 

Nicholas Torbert is a pediatrician with Avera Health. He says getting to know the kids and making sure they feel comfortable before their annual exam is important.

Josslin Jarding is heading into the 8th grade and plans to play volleyball, basketball and run track. She's adding a sports exam to her well being check today.

"I do see some benefits in it, because the school requires it," said Josslin. 

"I usually bring all three of them in, every year, for a well check. So we kind of crossed out two things at once today," said Jessica Jarding, Josslin's mom. 

Josslin's mom is a nurse and says having her kids seen by someone else helps her to know how they're doing.

"I just see it as a good baseline. Don't know if there's something wrong if you don't know what right looked like," said Jessica Jarding, Josslin's mother. 

The well-being check involves a full physical exam, vaccination updates, and conversation. All of which Torbert says could prevent bigger issues down the road.

"Just to make sure that things are going okay. School is alright, and they're not experiencing any physical symptoms that might be symptoms of more chronic disease," said Torbert. 

Sports exams are usually required annually, however you can find out your district's requirements by contacting the school.

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