What Is Puberty? Advice for Parents

Being a parent can be compared to being on a rollercoaster—a neverending barrage of challenges, emotions, and life lessons. If the journey of the parent is a rollercoaster, then puberty is a section filled with peaks and troughs, twists and turns. In short, puberty can be a challenging time for both parents and kids to navigate.

This is in part because there’s a lot of awkwardness and uncertainty surrounding what exactly goes on during puberty and why. Educating yourself on this matter can help you to better navigate this turbulent time.

So, what is puberty? Read on to find out everything you need to know.

What Is Puberty?

Puberty is a developmental phase that all boys and girls go through that bridges the gap between being a kid and growing into an adult. As you can imagine, it’s a time of great change. These changes can be sexual, physical, mental, and emotional.

So much is going on within your child’s body and mind during this period that it can be difficult to process. This is why it’s a good idea to speak with them about the changes they may be experiencing often and early on. The more they understand about what they’re going through and the more they feel supported the easier a time they will have.

A good piece of puberty advice would be to not force the conversation. It can be awkward for everyone involved, so try to tell them you’re there to talk when they’re ready. There are many good pieces of literature (both factual and fictional) that your child might benefit from reading.

What Age Does Puberty Occur?

To prepare yourself for the trialing and often thrilling time that is puberty, you’ll want to know when it will occur. So, what’s the age at which you can expect to see the first signs?

One thing to note is that while there is an age range within which puberty usually happens, this will be a little different for every adolescent. For girls, the average age to begin puberty is 11, while for boys the average age is 12.

These are only averages though. For some girls and boys, it can occur earlier. Some kids don’t begin to go through puberty until they are 14 or 15.

What Can You Expect From Puberty?

In the interest of understanding puberty, let’s take a look at some of the changes you and your child can expect. Most children will develop acne, a lower voice, and pubic hair.

Both boys and girls will see changes in the shapes of their bodies. They might find themselves eating more and sweating more than usual. In terms of mental developments, they might begin to start thinking about sex, and engaging in more risky behavior.

This is only a small sample of what you can expect. If you’re after a more comprehensive puberty guide, Youthline is a great resource for parents and kids alike.

Understanding Puberty

Puberty can be a tough time for parents and kids, but by arming yourself with as much information as possible, you’ll make it a little bit easier. Be prepared for the day your child comes to you with the question “what is puberty?”. If you’re looking for more parenting advice, please feel free to take a look at my other content now.