As you get older, your body changes. This is part of growing up. It's called puberty.
What Is Puberty?
Puberty is when a person's
body changes as they go from being a kid to an adult. Boys
become men. Girls become women. The changes of puberty happen slowly.
When things change, it can feel a little scary, but knowing what to expect can
help you feel better. When you have questions, ask your mom, dad, doctor, or another
What Will Happen to My Body?
During puberty, your body goes through many changes. This is healthy and normal.
First, the skin on your face will get oily and you may get pimples.
Your voice will sound
Hair will grow on body parts other than your head. It will grow on your face, under
your arms, on your chest, and in your private area (the part of your body covered
by underwear.) Your arms and legs will get hairier. When you sweat,
it will smell stinky, especially under your arms.
Your penis and testicles (balls) will get bigger. Sometimes your penis will get
bigger and hard. This is called an erection.
Why Does My Penis Get Hard?
Sometimes erections just happen. Other times, they happen when you touch your penis
or something rubs against it. It's called ejaculation when a sticky liquid called
semen comes out of your penis.
When you ejaculate at night in your sleep, it is called a wet dream. Erections,
ejaculation, and wet dreams are a normal part of puberty.
How Will I Feel?
Puberty might cause strong emotions, like feeling angry.
You may have other feelings too:
You might feel happy one minute and sad the next.
You might think another person is cute, and like them a lot.
You might feel like touching yourself in a private area.
These feelings are normal and part of growing up.
Private means when you are alone. Your bedroom and the bathroom are private places.
You also have private parts of your body, which are covered by your underwear. Some
of the changes that come with puberty need to be taken care of in private.
What to Do in Private
Touch yourself. It's OK to touch your private parts when you are alone in the bathroom
or your bedroom with the door closed. Ejaculations and wet dreams happen in private.
Do not touch your private parts when in public. Public places are where other people
are around, like a classroom, restaurant, or playground.
Your mom or dad or doctor may need to check your private area to keep it clean
and healthy. No one else should touch your private area, and you should never touch
another person's private area. If anyone (even an adult) ever touches your private
area in a way that makes you feel bad, say "No!" and tell your mom, dad, or other
When you are older and ready to have a girlfriend or boyfriend, talk to a parent,
doctor, or other trusted adult to learn about sex and healthy relationships.