Here are some suggestions from Bright Futures experts that may be of value to your family.​​

How You are Doing

Enjoy spending time with your family.

Find activities you are really interested in, such as sports, theater, or volunteering.

Try to be responsible for your schoolwork or work obligations.

Always talk through problems and never use violence.

If you get angry with someone, try to walk away.

If you feel unsafe in your home or have been hurt by someone, let your health care professional know. Hotlines and community agencies can also provide confidential help.

Talk with your health care professional if you are worried about your living or food situation. Community agencies and programs such as SNAP can help.

Don’t smoke, vape, or use drugs. Avoid people who do when you can. Talk with your health care professional if you are worried about alcohol or drug use in your family.

Your Daily Life

Visit the dentist at least twice a year.

Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss once a day.

Be a healthy eater.

  • Have vegetables, fruits, lean protein, and whole grains at meals and snacks.
  • Limit fatty, sugary, salty foods that are low in nutrients, such as candy, chips, and ice cream.
  • Eat when you’re hungry. Stop when you feel satisfied.
  • Eat breakfast.

Drink plenty of water.

Make sure to get enough calcium every day

  • Have 3 or more servings of low-fat (1%) or fat-free milk and other low-fat dairy products, such as yogurt and cheese.

Women: Make sure to eat foods rich in folate, such as fortified grains and dark- green leafy vegetables.

Aim for at least 1 hour of physical activity every day.

Wear safety equipment when you play sports.

Get enough sleep.

Talk with your health care professional about managing your health care and insurance as an adult.

Your Feelings

Most people have ups and downs. If you are feeling sad, depressed, nervous, irritable, hopeless, or angry, let your health care professional know or reach out to another health care professional.

Figure out healthy ways to deal with stress.

Try your best to solve problems and make decisions on your own.

Sexuality is an important part of your life. If you have any questions or concerns, we are here for you.

Healthy Behavior Choices

Avoid using drugs, alcohol, tobacco, steroids, and diet pills. Support friends who choose not to use.

If you use drugs or alcohol, let your health care professional know or talk with another trusted adult about it. They can help you with quitting or cutting down on your use.

Make healthy decisions about your sexual behavior.

If you are sexually active, always practice safe sex. Always use birth control along with a condom to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.

All sexual activity should be something you want. No one should ever force or try to convince you.

Protect your hearing at work, home, and concerts. Keep your earbud volume down.

Staying Safe

Always be a safe and cautious driver.

  • Insist that everyone use a lap and shoulder seat belt.
  • Limit the number of friends in the car and avoid driving at night.
  • Avoid distractions. Never text or talk on the phone while you drive.

Do not ride in a vehicle with someone who has been using drugs or alcohol.

  • If you feel unsafe driving or riding with someone, call someone you trust to drive you.

Wear helmets and protective gear while playing sports. Wear a helmet when riding a bike, a motorcycle, or an ATV or when skiing or skateboarding.

Always use sunscreen and a hat when you’re outside.

Fighting and carrying weapons can be dangerous. Talk with your parents, teachers, or health care professional about how to avoid these situations.

Helpful Resource

  • National Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233​

Consistent with Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents, 4th Edition

The information contained in this webpage should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances. Original handout included as part of the Bright Futures Tool and Resource Kit, 2nd Edition.

Inclusion in this webpage does not imply an endorsement by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The AAP is not responsible for the content of the resources mentioned in this webpage. Website addresses are as current as possible but may change at any time.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) does not review or endorse any modifications made to this handout and in no event shall the AAP be liable for any such changes.

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American Academy of Pediatrics