Dr. Alan Greene on Puberty

When should I start talking to my child about puberty?

Question

I want the lowdown on the periods. Can you tell me what ages are average, what to talk about, and all that?

Answer

The first period normally falls between 9 and 16. It usually starts two to two and a half years after the first signs of puberty -- about the same time as the peak growth spurt.

It does tend to run the same time in families, but there are many factors that can affect it (including geographic location). Most have started by the thirteenth birthday and about one-third by the twelfth. Schools usually talk about it in fifth grade but it is great for kids to learn about it first from parents.

 

The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child's condition.

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