The growth changes that occur during puberty constitute the fastest growth our bodies will experience during any time in our lives, aside from infant hood.
On average, puberty usually begins around 10 years of age in girls, and about 11 years of age in boys.
Throughout this period, males and females reach their adult height, as well as sexual maturity.
While there are five phases in the growth cycle, different changes occur depending on gender.
Females tend to reach their height growth spurt in phase two, while males tend to reach it during phase four. This is why girls are often taller than boys during middle school, yet boys eventually catch up toward the beginning of high school.
Because teenagers are experiencing substantial changes in both their height and genital region throughout puberty, it can certainly be a sensitive time for them.
It is important for parents to make sure their kids understand that these changes are normal and that they occur at different times for different people.
Parents are also encouraged to enlist the help of their teen’s doctor to ensure they are growing properly and further educate them about the stages of puberty.
Our community is fortunate, as Cone Health has established an Adolescent Medicine Clinic, with an exceptional team of experts dedicated to caring for and educating teens as they go through puberty.
Dr. Robert Doolittle is the medical director at Cone Health Adolescent Medicine Clinic located on North Church St. in Greensboro.
Doolittle is also a primary care physician at Cone Health Urgent Medical & Family Care. He is a 1974 graduate of University of Alabama Medical School.
He completed his residency in internal medicine at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in 1978, and a fellowship in adolescent medicine at University of Alabama in 1980.