Health Tests You Should Get Before Going Off To College

Written by  //  2014/12/12  //  Good Health  //  No comments

In the hectic first few months of college, it’s easy to neglect your health. You’ll be staying up late writing papers and studying for exams, eating in a cafeteria rather than having nutritious home-cooked meals, and convenient medical care may be restricted to a busy student health center with limited facilities. The best way to ensure good health as you start college is to visit your family physician before you head off to school for a complete physical examination.

Tests for HIV and HPV

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) aren’t limited to any one type of person or sexual activity. Even if you have only had a single partner, and your activities have been limited to oral sex or even just kissing, there is still a possibility that you might have a STD. Because you can be infected with STDs without having any obvious symptoms, you should get tested once a year, even if you seem to be in perfect health, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Pap Smear

For many teens, college can be a time for sexual exploration or discovery. It is essential to be prepared with appropriate birth control methods and knowledge of safe sexual practices. To discover which birth control methods are most likely to be safe and effective for you and have any necessary tests including a pap smear before deciding on a birth-control method, consult a board-certified gynecologist such as Dr. Gilbert Webb in St. Louis.

Tuberculosis Screening

Many colleges require proof of tuberculosis screening before you are eligible to enroll for classes. There are two main types of test for tuberculosis, the tuberculin skin test, which requires two visits to a doctor, and a TB blood test called an interferon-gamma release assay, which requires only a single visit.

Hearing and Vision Tests

If you can’t hear the professor clearly or have difficulty reading textbooks or other assigned materials, it will be much harder to succeed academically. Often, vision and hearing issues develop gradually, and you may not be aware of them until you are tested.

The time to ensure that your body is ready for college is before you leave home. Contact the student health center at the college where you have been accepted at least three months before the start of the term to get a list of the required and recommended immunizations and health tests, and make sure you are fully ready to enjoy your college experience.

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