All About Puberty in Girls and Boys

Everyone goes through puberty and with it brings many changes. You experience hormonal changes and physical changes. Here you will find the information about puberty for boys and girls. It’s important that both sexes knows what the other is going through.
What is Puberty?
Puberty is a stage the body goes through to become an adult capable of reproducing. The brain will signal for hormonal production, the testes and ovaries are responsible for making those hormones, which will begin the growth process in many parts of the body.

What Girls Go Through During Puberty

Girls generally begin puberty a year or two before boys do, the average age is 9 – 14 years old. It takes about 4 years for girls to fully go through the changes.
1. Breasts

Estradiol, which is an estrogen, is responsible for developing the breasts and uterus. These levels of estrogen are much higher in women then they are in men. The breasts are usually the first sign of puberty in girls. Within about 2 years the breasts should be at their mature size. There are a lot of differences between breasts and not all girls breasts will be the same. Often heredity and race have something to do with the size and shape.

2. Hair

The pubic hair starts to grow shortly after the breasts and within 6 to 12 months the hair will be too many to count. The hair starts to grown around the labia, then to the pubic mound, out to the thighs and sometimes grows upwards towards the navel.

3. Vagina, Uterus and Ovaries

Estrogen can cause whiteish secretions from the vagina, as well the color of the vaginal surface becomes duller and darker pink. The uterus and ovaries gradually become larger.

4. Menstruation

The first menstral cycle usually happens 2 years after the vagina, uterus and ovaries begin development. The cycles are not regular in intervals and amount for the first 2 years.

5. Body Shape

As the levels of estrogen rise in the body the hips and pelvis will widen, which creates a larger area for the birth canal. Fat tissues increase and enlarge around the breasts, hips, thighs, bum, upper arms and pubis area. The girl will have 50% more body fat then a boy on average.

6. Acne and Body Odor

The hormones can change the composition of the fat cells which will result in a more adult odor. The hormones also causes oil production in the skin to increase which will cause acne. In many cases the acne will go away after puberty, but in some cases it does not. Either way picking at the acne will leave scars.

What Boys Go Through During Puberty

Boys begin puberty around ages 10 – 17. It will take about 6 years for the boy to complete his changes. His growth spurt will begin later and take longer to complete.
1. Testes

The hormone testosterone, which is an androgen, is the major sex steroid in boys. One of the first things to happen to boys is the enlargment of the testicles, which will continue until the end of puberty. The testes role is to produce hormones and sperm. Boys are fertile around age 13, and fully fertile around 14 – 16 years old.

2. Hair

The first growth of hair is usually around the base of the penis. The hair will grow in the “pubic triangle”, which spreads out to the thighs and upwards to the navel. The next areas of hair grown are the underarm hair, perianal hair, upper lip hair, sideburn hair, periareolar hair, and the rest of the beard area. Arm, leg, chest, abdominal, and back hair eventually become thicker and heavier.

3. Facial Hair

The facial hair will generally grow in this order; the corners of the upper lip, the mustache area, the upper areas of the cheeks, under the lower lip and then out to the sides and lower part of the chin and eventually fill out the beard area. But not all men get facial hair right away or some never really get it. Same with chest hair, not all men get it.

4. Voice Changes

The voice box grows due to the hormones, far more in boys then in girls, and the voice lowers and drops. But this doesn’t happen over night and the boy may experience periods where his voice changes from high to low and can often be embarassing.

5. Body and Muscles

Boys develop more muscle and the bones get heavier during puberty. This is when the features become more obviously male, like wider shoulders and jaws.

6. Acne and Body Odor

The hormones can change the composition of the fat cells which will result in a more adult odor. The hormones also causes oil production in the skin to increase which will cause acne. In many cases the acne will go away after puberty, but in some cases it does not. Either way do not pick at the acne as it will leave scars.