Growing Up for Boys - Physical Changes During Puberty

BY Ritu Shah

01 Sep 2022

Kids go through many stages of growth during their lives. Out of all the growth milestones, puberty is one of the most crucial phases. It indicates that your kids are going through significant changes that are necessary, natural, and healthy.


What is Puberty?

Puberty is the phase in growing up that includes physical, emotional, and psychological changes. These are important signs that your kid is moving towards adulthood.

Some of the key changes that happen during puberty are:

  • Physical growth both inside and outside the body
  • Growth of sexual organs
  • Brain development
  • Emotional changes
  • Changes in social relationships

When Does Puberty Start?

Kids can hit puberty at different points from pre-teens to teen years. For boys, puberty typically starts in the range of 9 - 14 years of age. This is the time that sex hormones are being released from the gonads (which are testes for the boys). Puberty changes can be completed at any time between the range of 18 months to 5 years. 

 

Key Physical Changes in Puberty for Boys

There are some main physical changes that your kid will go through from the age of around 9 to 14. Here is what you should expect:

Physical Strength

  • Noticeable change in the body shape as muscle tissues start increasing
  • Your boy will become taller, and his shoulders will get broader.
  • Motor skills and hand-eye coordination will increase.

 

Hair growth

  • Pubic hair will start growing around the genitals.
  • Hair will also grow on the arms, chest, underarms, and face.
  • The body hair will become darker and coarser.

 

Bones and Other Organs

  • There will be an increase in the thickness and volume of the bones.
  • Limbs will grow bigger.
  • Lung power will also increase.

 

Voice

  • The larynx and the vocal cords will enlarge.
  • This will cause the voice to deepen and crack sometimes.

 

Weight Gain

  • During puberty, the stomach and intestines will also grow. Coupled with overall body growth, your child will need more healthy food. He will also put on weight.
  • He will need food that is rich in calcium, proteins, minerals, iron, and energy.

 

Sweating

  • The sweat glands develop around the groin and armpits. Your kid will sweat more and might face the problem of bad body odour.
  • Hygiene and personal grooming are essential for your kid during this time.

He might need to use deodorant to tackle body odour.

 

Skin and Hair

  • The glands on the face, shoulders, and back become more active and start producing more oil.
  • This might lead to acne or pimples. These are fairly normal occurrences. Washing your face with a mild and toxin-free face wash will help. If the acne is too aggravating, consult your child’s doctor.
  • Similarly, the hair will also become oilier and will need regular washing with kid-friendly shampoo.

Read about Hair Care for Kids to know how to take care of hair and its issues.

 

Teeth

  • Dental health will become essential for your kid.
  • He can get his second molars at around 13 or 14. 
  • The third molars might also grow between 15 - 25 years of age.

 

Brain Development

  • There will be a boost to brain development during puberty impacting his social and behavioral skills.
  • Your kid will gain more motor skills, problem-solving, decision-making, and planning skills. 
  • He will also increase his control and cognitive abilities.

Social and Emotional Behaviour

  • All these hormonal changes will be confusing to your kid. 
  • It might lead to mood swings and emotional outbursts.
  • He might also start becoming romantically or sexually attracted to other people.

 

How to Take Care of Your Kid During Puberty

Your kid is undergoing a lot of changes. It is not only physical but mental, emotional, social, and psychological as well. As a parent, you should be available and understanding. Here are some tips on how to see your kid through this dynamic change.

  • Educate yourself on the changes that he is going through. 
  • Make your kid aware that you are available to listen and understand any issues.
  • Explain to him that changes are normal, especially on topics like a wet dream, breast development, masturbation, and sexual attraction.
  • Do not compare his physical changes with his peers or siblings.
  • Be aware of when to consult a doctor.
  • Encourage healthy and hygienic habits. Nutritious food is essential for overall development.
  • Be involved in his life, especially the kind of company he keeps. Educate him on social media protocols and pitfalls.
  • Be respectful while putting your points across.
  • Ensure he is physically active through sports or other activities like dance, walking, and exercising.
  • Ensure he sleeps well and at least 8 to 9 hours.

 

Puberty is difficult both for parents and kids. However, it also is an exciting phase where your child is finally moving ahead in adulthood. With some empathy, understanding, and open communication, you can lead your kid through this. Encourage healthy eating and daily hygiene so that he can inculcate this behaviour in adulthood as well.