Puberty happens to every person some time after the age of eight. It is the transition into adulthood, when the sex organs grow and develop, and the body becomes capable to reproduce. These changes can make you feel proud and happy, but sometimes they can make you feel confused or embarrassed.
The biological changes that occur during puberty are the following:
- The hypothalamus signals the pituitary gland to release hormones called gonadotropins into the bloodstream.
- These hormones come about one year before the bodily changes begin (hence physical complaints – such as headaches and stomachaches – sometimes precede the first menstruation).
- These hormones stimulate estrogen production (6 times greater than previous levels) and androgen production (20 times greater than previous levels) by the ovaries in the girl and the testes in the boy.
- Both genders have both hormones, but during puberty, boys get 20 to 60 percent more androgen and girls get 20 to 30 percent more estrogen.
For more information about the different changes that you may experience during puberty, see our articles: