The findings are based on CS Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health that includes a nationally-representative group of parents of teenagers between ages 13-18 years.

"The majority of parents are managing teens' health care visits, and their teens may be missing out on valuable opportunities to learn how to take ownership of their own health," said Sarah J Clark, associate director of the CS Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health at University of Michigan in the US.

About 34 percent of parents said their teenagers discussed health concerns privately with a doctor without them in the room, and less than 10 percent said their teenagers can complete their health history form independently. Nearly 40 percent of parents said that they alone - not their teenagers - would ask questions about health issues.

Only 15 percent of parents said their teenagers would independently share physical or emotional problems with the doctor.

"Speaking with the doctor privately is important, not only to give teens a chance to disclose confidential information, but also to provide the opportunity for them to be an active participant in their own health care, without a parent taking over," Clark noted in an official statement.