Healthsheet

Changes During Puberty for Boys and Girls

Changes During Puberty for Boys and Girls

What is puberty? Growing up. Everyone goes through the same process. Whether you start at age nine or at age fifteen, it’s all “normal.’’You are still you inside. Your body and feelings are changing at their own pace. Growing up can be a great experience: a time of changing and finding out who you are.

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At 18, you'll pretty much have your adult body.

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At 15, you'll see less difference between you and your friends.

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At 12, you may have a young girl's body or begin to look like a woman.

GIRLS

Breasts

Breasts come in all shapes and sizes. Some girls’ breasts grow early; others grow late. Most girls have one breast that grows faster than the other.

  • Your breasts start growing, first with the nipples and the dark area around them (the areolae).

  • Your feet and hands grow next.

  • Then you’ll gain most of your height and muscle.

  • Underarm and pubic hair appear first as downy fuzz, and later grow thicker and darker.

  • Adipose tissue (fat) gives you a curvier shape; a certain amount of fat is needed for normal periods.

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At 18, you'll see less difference between you and your friends.

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At 15, you might look like a child or a young man: either one is normal.

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At 12, you'll probably still have a young boy's body.

BOYS

Erection

An erection is the swelling and stiffening of your penis. Erections don’t only happen in sexualsituations. It’s also normal to get a “hardon’’ just from your pants rubbing against you.

  • Your testicles start to grow. Then your penis grows.

  • Your feet and hands grow next.

  • Your muscle may double and you gain most of your height.

  • Underarm hair, pubic hair, and facial hair appear first as fuzz, and later grow thicker and darker.

  • Your breast tissue may grow a bit and then shrink.

  • Your voice deepens.


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