Signs of Puberty in Boys
Puberty, for boys and girls alike, can be a confusing but exciting time! We are here to help you through it.During puberty, your body is changing and becoming more adult-like; it can be a whirlwind of physical and emotional changes. While it is tempting to compare yourself to other boys, remember that everyone develops at a different pace - and puberty is not a race.
- Puberty doesn't happen all at once; it happens in stages.
- For boys, puberty usually begins around age 10-12, and lasts until around age 20.
- Many changes occur during puberty: Your body begins to grow faster, your testicles and penis will become larger; you will develop more hair on your body, face, underarms and genital area; your voice may become deeper, and you may develop pimples.
During puberty, your body begins to grow. An early change is that your testicles get bigger. Sometime after that, your penis gets bigger, too, and pubic hair grows on your scrotum and above your penis. At some point, your voice will get deeper.
Most guys will grow some hair on their face. The hair on your body will probably get thicker, too. Some men shave the hair on their body, while others leave it alone - it’s your choice! You'll probably begin to sweat more under your arms, and your sweat may smell different or stronger. You can shower or bathe more often and use deodorant if you don't like the way you smell.
When a boy's penis becomes hard and long, it is known as an erection. This usually happens when a boy has romantic or sexual thoughts, or as a response of physical touch or sight. Most erections are not straight, and tend to either curve upwards or to either side (a slightly curved penis is not a disease as some might tell you).
Have you ever woken up to find your bed sheets or underwear wet, sweaty or sticky? It’s possible that you have had a "wet dream." A wet dream happens when a boy ejaculates (releases) sperm while he is asleep. Wet dreams happen to most guys. They are normal and are nothing to be ashamed about!
Dreams that involve sex or sexual relations happen whether we want them to or not. You cannot control whether you have a wet dream. Although some people have ideas about how to prevent wet dreams from happening, there is no proven way to do this.
While having to change your sheets or clean up afterward may be embarrassing or annoying, keep in mind that wet dreams are a normal part of development. Having a wet dream never means you have been bad.
Many boys worry that their penis is smaller than other boys', but most penises are about the same size when erect. The average adult erect (hard) penis is between 12 and 18 centimeters long. The size of a boy's penis when it is flaccid (soft) does not really have anything to do with what it is like when erect. Some penises become much bigger when they become erect, and others stay the same size.
You might develop pimples (also called acne) during puberty. Pimples and acne can appear on your face, back, anywhere! During puberty, your skin produces more oil - and combined with bacteria and dirt, your pores get clogged and the result is pimples. Some people have a family history of acne - whether you have pimples is sometimes based on your genetics. To learn how to prevent pimples and care for your skin, visit our Hygiene section.
For many of us, masturbation is a sensitive topic. Let’s get the facts straight: Masturbation, defined as touching your own genitals for sexual pleasure, is a natural, safe, and common activity for all people! Masturbation cannot make you blind, crazy, or stupid. It cannot damage your body or stunt your growth, or make you no longer a virgin.
Masturbation can actually be good for you! Masturbation cannot lead to pregnancy or a sexually transmitted disease, it can relieve stress, and masturbating with a boyfriend or girlfriend is a great way to have safer sex while showing the other person what feels nice.
If you think that you are masturbating too frequently, or if masturbation is getting in the way of having the life you want, you may want to decrease the amount you are masturbating. Trying new activities, limiting the time you are alone, talking with a trusted friend, or reducing the amount of pornography you watch may help.