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What is Puberty?

Author:Dr. Rosa Ni

What is Puberty?

Puberty refers to a series of changes in the body during 9-19 years.

One of the most significant changes in the growth of height. Children usually grow substantially in a short period, which is called a "growth spurt."

Secondly, the body of adolescents will gradually approach adults, girls will have the ability to become pregnant, and boys will have the ability to conceive the opposite sex.

When does puberty generally start?

Different children start puberty at other times. Girls generally begin at 9-12 years old, and boys typically begin at 10-13 years old. But it can also be normal to start puberty before or after these ages. The exact time of the onset of puberty depends on different factors, including genes, nutritional status, and weight.

What causes puberty?

Puberty is caused by hormones in the body, which come from the brain, ovaries (girls), and testes (boys). The ovaries produce estrogen, and the testicles produce testosterone. Estrogen and testosterone can cause many physical changes.

What changes will happen to girls?

1. Enlarged breasts this is the first sign of puberty in many girls.

2. The growth of pubic hair (genital area hair), armpit hair, and leg hair is the first sign of puberty in some girls.

3. Menstruation begins. Menstruation usually comes about two years after breast development or pubic hair grows, and it may be advanced or delayed. In the beginning, it may not come once a month. It is usual for some time to go once every two months or twice a month. Some girls may feel abdominal distension or mood changes when menstruation is about to come.

4. White or clear vaginal discharge may appear, that is, a small amount of liquid discharged from the vagina.

What changes will happen to the boy?


1. An enlarged testicle, which is usually the first change to occur.

2. The penis becomes longer and thicker.

3. Pubic hair (genital area hair), beard, and armpit hair growth.

4. Voice changes.

5. Boys can ejaculate in small amounts while falling asleep at night, sometimes called "dreams."

6. The breasts are slightly enlarged, but they usually fade away gradually.

What other changes can happen during adolescence?

1. Acne: You can wash your face with a mild facial cleanser twice a day to prevent acne. You can also ask the medical staff how to treat it.

2. Underarm sweating and body odor: Adolescence is the period when most children start to use antiperspirant or deodorant.

3. Vision changes: Some children need to wear glasses from adolescence.

4. Mood changes or mood swings


What can parents do to support their children and relieve their worries?

It helps to be honest with your child. Let the child know what changes are about to occur in the body. Some of these changes may make the child feel distressed or embarrassed. Tell the child that these changes are expected.

Parents can also make it clear that they will support their children when they have questions about gender identity or sexual orientation. "Gender identity" refers to the inner feelings of one's gender, that is, whether one is a girl or a boy, or both or neither. "Sexual orientation" refers to a person's physical or sexual attraction to others, including same-sex attraction, opposite-sex attraction, attraction to both, or neither.

How should parents teach their children about safe sex?

It is usual for many teenagers to begin to experience sexual feelings during adolescence. You can talk openly about sex with your children, especially to teach your children about safe sex. Although the adolescent's body may appear to be mature, its thoughts and emotions are not necessarily mature. Therefore, many teenagers do not take protective measures such as wearing condoms during sex, which can cause pregnancy or contract sexually transmitted infections.

Would you please tell you how to contraceptive or avoid sexually transmitted infections for children in puberty? The only reliable prevention is not to have sex. If a teenager has sex, contraceptive measures can reduce the chance of pregnancy, but certain types of contraceptive measures cannot prevent sexually transmitted infections. To reduce the chance of infection, adolescents should use condoms every time they have sex.

The child must also be told what appropriate sexual behavior is. For example, you can explain the meaning of "consent," that is, agreeing to do something with another person. The things that require consent include not only sexual intercourse but also kissing, touching, or any other sexual behavior. You cannot do any of the above without the consent of others.

The growth process is unavoidable from troubles, which are the sweet and beautiful troubles of youth. Would you please pay more attention to these lovely teenagers?

If your child is struggling with physical changes during adolescence or looks anxious or depressed, please tell the healthcare provider, and they will help you find the best way to support your child.