Page updated: 20 Dec 2010
For teenage girls
Visit the NHS Choices website to find out all about your health. The website includes information on drinking, sunbathing, taking drugs, having sex and exercise, among many other things.
For teenage boys
The NHS Choices website is full of information on how you can stay fit and healthy. It includes advice on sex, drinking, and taking drugs, as well as ways to keep healthy through exercise and diet.
Many teenagers will begin experimenting with sex. Not only is it important to make sure you practice safe sex by using a condom, but also to ask yourself if you are ready to become sexually active.
The NHS Choice website offers advice on how to make sure you are ready to have sex, and how to talk to your boyfriend or girlfriend about your feelings.
If you have had sex and are concerned about sexually transmitted infections, pregnancy or anything else, you can visit one of a number of clinics in Trafford.
Am I normal?
Our bodies come in all shapes and sizes. If you’re worried about the way you look, or something about your body is concerning you, visit the NHS Choices website or make an appointment to see your GP.
The chances are that you’re perfectly normal, but if you’re worried then you should put your mind at rest.
By the time you’re a teenager, you’ll have had most of your injections. However, there are one or two more you need to have. These are:
Teenage booster (Td/IPV)
Protects against tetanus, diphtheria and polio.
Given between the ages of 13 and 18.
Cervical cancer vaccination (HPV, or human papillomavirus vaccination)
Protects against human papillomavirus, which has been shown to cause cervical cancer in women.
Given at age 12 to 13 (girls only) and also, for the time being, to girls aged between 13 and 18 as part of a catch-up programme.
Some teenagers are also advised to have the following non-routine vaccinations on the NHS if they're in an 'at risk' group:
Meningitis (MenC) vaccine
Protects against meningitis C (meningococcal group C).
Teenagers, especially those leaving home to go to college or university, should be vaccinated against meningitis C if they didn't have this vaccination as a child.
It’s given before going to university, or as soon as possible after starting.
Protects against measles, mumps and rubella (German measles).
Teenagers leaving home to go to college or university should be vaccinated with MMR if they missed out on this vaccination or didn’t complete the full course (two doses of MMR) as a child.
It’s given before going to university or as soon as possible after starting.
Protects against seasonal flu.
Teenagers should have an annual flu vaccination if they're in one of the 'at-risk' categories. For example, if they have diabetes, or asthma that requires inhaled steroids, or a serious long-term condition, such as kidney, liver or heart disease. Also, teenagers who take medication that affects their immune system, such as steroid tablets, should to have the flu vaccine.
It’s given every year starting from October/November.
Hepatitis B vaccine
Protects against hepatitis B.
Teenagers who are injecting drug users, using crack cocaine, smoking heroin or likely to progress to injecting drug use should have the vaccine.
So, too, should those living with injecting drug users; the sexual partners of injecting drug users; teenagers who change sexual partner frequently; and teenagers travelling for extended periods to places where the disease is more common, for instance southern and Eastern Europe, Africa and Asia.
Also teenagers with certain long-term kidney or liver conditions, or those receiving blood products can have the vaccine.
It’s given before going to university or as soon as possible after starting (three doses of vaccine are given initially over a short period, then a fourth dose after 12 months).