Adolescents and puberty: are the effects on adolescents exaggerated?
Current research questions whether the influences of puberty in adolescents are as strong as previously believed. Have the effects of puberty been exaggerated? While it’s true that puberty affects some teens more acutely than others, in general, puberty is a less dramatic event for teens.
Before continuing in this article, let’s agree on what puberty is. It is a biological change that children go through and that causes bodily and emotional changes. It also includes the maturation of thought and moral development, in the way adolescents see themselves and others.
Although puberty occurs at an alarmingly earlier age in boys, puberty generally begins between the ages of 8 and 13 for girls and between 9 and 14 years for boys. If it occurs before the age of 8 in girls and 9 in boys, it is considered early (early) development. Puberty is considered delayed if it has not started before the age of 13 for girls and 14 for boys.
First signs of puberty for girls (average age 10) It is the budding of the breasts and the subsequent development of the breasts. This change is followed by growth of pubic hair and armpit hair. The first menstrual period (menarche) usually occurs around the age of 12. However, menarche progresses earlier in some girls, particularly African-Americans. There is a growth spurt during puberty and girls will reach final adult height approximately two years after menarche. Weight gain and widening of the pelvic area are also noted. Puberty, as a complete process, takes 3 to 4 years.
Puberty starts later for Kids. The average age of onset of puberty is around 11 years old. The first development observed is the enlargement of the testes. This is later followed by growth of pubic hair, as well as armpit, armpit, chest, and face hair. There is also a deepening of the male voice. The growth of muscle mass and the ability to have erections and ejaculate (especially nocturnal emissions, “wet dreams”) occurs and this and other sexual maturation processes occur within 3 to 4 years.
Puberty is also associated with teens having increased perspiration, body odor, and acne. It is important for the reader to understand that there can be great variation in the onset and progression of puberty.
As in other studies on human growth and development, stress can be associated with changes in the body, puberty is no exception. However, have the effects of puberty been exaggerated? Current research indicates that the vast majority of adolescents cope with these stresses effectively. Among the many questions posed to hundreds of adolescents in my research (2010), several questions concerned their views on puberty. Let’s “listen” to what teens have to say.
Was the onset of puberty a problem for you?
1. Yes – 2. No
Men: 1. 7% – 2. 93%
Women: 1. 7% – 2. 93%
Would you describe the onset of puberty as coming:
1. Arrived too early – 2. Average – 3. Too late
Men: 1. 7% – 2. 91% – 3. 2%
Women: 1.18% – 2.78% – 3.4%
If puberty came too early for you, did it generate unwanted attention from your peers?
others of the opposite sex?
1. Yes – 2. No
Men: 1.26% – 2.74%
Women: 1.58% – 2.42%
Clearly from my sample of adolescents, puberty was not viewed as problematic, traumatic, or a problem for our adolescents. Male and female respondents were exactly the same in their responses.
More women reported that they perceived puberty to come too early than men, by a two-to-one margin, and women felt that too early (early) created a problem for them again, a two-to-one margin.
Most adults seem to have a negative view of the onset of puberty in their adolescence and fear the consequences of puberty and are quick to attribute negative behaviors of their adolescence to the onset of puberty.
Finally, recent research strongly suggests that puberty has less dramatic effects for most teens than is commonly thought. Of course, parents must advise their children and prepare for the changes they are about to go through.