PUBERTY

WHAT IS PUBERTY?

Puberty is when your body begins to develop and change into an adult body. It is also the time when you become capable of sexual reproduction (or having babies).  Many physical and emotional changes begin to take place in the body during this time.

 

WHY DOES IT HAPPEN?

The brain sends signals (hormones) to the sex organs (ovaries in girls, testicals in guys). The gonads then send more signals (more hormones) to the rest of the body. This leads to changes on the inside and outside of the body. In young women, the major hormone involved is estrogen. In young men, it is testosterone.
 

WHEN DOES IT START?

Everyone’s body is different. We all develop in different ways. The time when puberty begins depends on such things as family genes, nutrition, and whether you are male of female. Young women typically begin puberty 1-2 years earlier than young men.

For girls puberty can start anywhere from age 9 and 13.

For guys puberty can start anywhere from age 10 to 17.

 What does puberty looks like for boys?

YOUNG MEN

Puberty is a time in a young man’s life when his body changes into that of an adult’s. It is also a time when he begins to produce sperm and therefore he is able to get a girl pregnant by having sexual intercourse. (penis in vagina with ejaculation or “orgasm”)
 

MALE ANATOMY

 
            External:                                                                                                                   
 
Uncircumcised Circumcised
           
            www.engenderhealth.org                                                                                                            
 
 
Internal:
 
 
 

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PHYSICAL CHANGES IN YOUNG MEN

 
Body Size and Shape: Arms, legs, hands and feet may grow faster than the rest of your body. Until the rest catches up, you may feel a little clumsy. You will get taller and your shoulders will get broader. You will gain a lot of weight. Many young men notice some swelling under their nipples. Don’t worry. This is common, normal and only temporary. It will go away. If you are worried about it, talk to your doctor.
 
Voice: Your voice will get deeper. This may start with voice cracking. As you keep growing, the cracking will stop and your voice will stay in the lower range.
 
Hair: Hair will appear under your arms, on your legs, face, and above your penis. Chest hair may appear later, although not all men have chest hair.
 
Body Odor, Skin Changes, and Acne: You will begin to notice “adult” body odor from your armpits when you sweat. Wash your underarms daily and consider using deodorant. Your skin may also become more oily which can lead to acne or pimples. Avoid touching or popping pimples, which can make them worse, and wash with a gentle soap.
 
Penis: Your penis and testes (testicles, balls) will get larger. You may have erections more often due to an increase in sex hormones. Erections occur when the penis gets stiff and hard - sometimes for no reason. This is normal. Many young men become concerned about their penis size; he may compare his own penis size with that of his friends. It is important to remember that the size of a man's penis has nothing to do with his manliness or sexual functioning. Your body will also begin to produce sperm during puberty. This means that during an erection, you may also experience ejaculation. This occurs when semen (made up of sperm and other fluids) is released through the penis. This could happen while you are sleeping. You might wake up to find your sheets or underwear are wet. This is called a nocturnal emission or "wet dream." This is normal and will stop as you get older.
 
 
                    

YOUR DOCTOR’S VISIT:

 
All young men should see their doctor at least once a year for a check-up. You may be asked to remove your clothes and put on a gown for the exam. The doctor will feel your scrotum (testes, balls) for any lumps or bumps or other abnormalities. You should check your own testicles at home on a regular basis and notify your pediatrician if you feel anything concerning. The doctor will also check the glans (head, tip) of the penis for any discharge (drip, liquid). They may then check for a hernia by pushing part of your scrotum (sac) into something called your inguinal canal and asking you to cough (“turn your head and cough”). The entire exam takes only a few seconds to a minute from start to finish. If you have any more questions about the exam, feel free to ask you doctor before they examine you
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 What does puberty look like for girls?

YOUNG WOMEN

Like we said puberty is when your body changes into an adult body.  For women, this includes the ability to have a baby.
 

FEMALE ANATOMY

 
 
 
External Vagina:
 
 
           
 
Internal female organs:
 
                                
en.wikibooks.org
 
 

PHYSICAL CHANGES IN YOUNG WOMEN:

           
Breasts: In most young women, puberty starts with breast growth. When your breasts start to develop, you may notice small, tender lumps under one or both nipples. The swelling will eventually soften and extend outward from the nipples to include the whole breast as you begin to develop mature adult breasts. Normal breasts come in all different shapes and sizes.
 
                      
 
 
Hair: Soft hair will start to grow in the pubic area (the area between your legs). This hair will eventually become more coarse, thick and curly. You may also notice hair under your arms and on your legs.
 
                         
Body Shape: You may notice your hips get wider and your waist smaller. You will also begin to build up fat in the stomach, buttocks, and legs. This gives you the curvier shape of a woman.
           
Body Odor, Skin Changes and Acne: You will notice “adult” body odor from your armpits when you sweat. Wash your underarms daily and consider using deodorant. Your skin may also become more oily which can lead to acne or pimples. Avoid touching or popping pimples, which can make them worse, and wash with a gentle soap.
 

YOUR PERIOD (Rag, Aunt Flo): 

 
Before your period begins, you may notice some clear or whitish vaginal discharge (fluid) at times in your underpants. This is normal. Your menstrual cycle, or "period," usually begins about 2 years after you start to notice some breast development. During puberty, your ovaries begin to release eggs, which have been stored there since you were born. If an egg is fertilized by sperm from a man's penis, by having sex, it will grow inside your uterus and develop into a baby. To prepare for this, a thick layer of tissue and blood cells builds up in your uterus each month in case an egg is fertilized, so that it can grow and develop into a baby in that lining. If the egg does not meet with a sperm, these tissues and cells are not needed by the body. They turn into a blood-like fluid and flow out of the vagina. The first menstrual bleeding is called menarche. Menses (menstrual periods) are not always regular and monthly during the first 2 years of of your period. Over time, they will eventually become more regular and occur about once a month and last about 3 to 7 days each. Keeping track of when your period occurs and how long it lasts can help you predict when you should have your next one. During or just before each period, a young woman may feel some bloating, cramping, swelling or soreness of breasts, headaches or even moodiness. This is called premenstrual syndrome or PMS.
 
 

YOUR DOCTOR’S VISIT:

 

All teenage girls should see their doctor at least once a year for a check-up. You may be asked to remove your clothes and put on a gown for the exam. During the breast exam, the doctor is feeling for lumps, irregularities or discharge from your breasts. You should be checking your own breasts once a month at home, and notify your doctor with any concerns. The doctor may then check your external vaginal area (vagina), looking for any abnormalities such as bumps, warts or discharge. Your first internal pelvic exam (pelvic, pap) should be done by age 18 or 2 years after you first have sexual intercourse (penis in vagina), and then repeated once a year after that. This helps detect abnormalities in the reproductive organs (vagina, uterus, ovaries). The woman lies on the table and places her legs in stirrups or knee rests. To examine, the doctor gently inserts a sterile metal or plastic speculum into the vagina. They then swab the cervix (opening to the uterus) for a Pap test, which shows whether any pre-cancerous or cancerous cells are present. They may also test for sexually transmitted infections with a cotton swab at this time. After removing the speculum, the doctor will insert one or two gloved, lubricated fingers into the vagina and press down on the lower abdomen with the other hand to examine the internal organs. This entire internal exam takes only a few minutes from start to finish. If you have any more questions about the exam, feel free to ask you doctor before they examine you. 

 

  

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QUESTIONS

 
If you still have questions or need medical advise.  Go to a doctor.  Click here to find a clinic near you
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