Teenagers and adolescents

Paediatrics has always tended to be more focused on the younger age group, and this needs to change. This page aims to act as a signpost to useful sources of information and advice regarding some of the issues affecting teenagers.

Transition into adulthood


Being a teenager is a huge change, and a turbulent time for all! This is particularly difficult if you also have a severe or long-standing illness. Some of the key things to remember are:

Talk about it early. It is too late to think about transition to adult services if you are 17 and about to leave home. It needs is a process to be started gently much earlier, so that it doesn't come as a sudden shock.

This pathway has been walked before. Some teams (such as our diabetes team) already have adolescent clinics, run by a paediatric and an adult specialist. Other teams (such as our cystic fibrosis team) have a very clear relationship with the adult team. Whatever your situation, talk to the team looking after you, as well as other families who are going through the same process.

A transfer of control from early childhood (where the parents have huge amounts of control and responsibility), to adulthood cannot be done overnight.

This is a difficult process, requiring trust, honesty and persistence, but is essential to allow smooth transition.

Other sources of information and advice


Princes Trust - Helping young people move their lives forward

Youthinformation - Information toolkit for young people

thesite - General advice and information site

Test Valley young people's services directory