Here you can find information & resources for young ladies going through puberty
Puberty is an exciting and terrifying time! Suddenly you find that your breasts are growing, you're getting hair in different places, and your mood starts swinging all over the place. Not to worry, all of these things are perfectly normal. Once you know what to expect, puberty might not seem quite so scary!
Most girls gain weight during puberty. You might notice more fat along the upper arms, thighs, and upper back. Typically your hips will get rounder and wider, while your waist gets narrower. Of course, this develops differently in different girls. Some girls will be bigger than others. Some girls will be shorter than others.
Girls tend to grow fastest about six months before their first period. This is why girls tend to be bigger than boys during puberty.
You'll also find that hair will start growing in your armpits and that the hair on your legs gets coarser and more profuse.
Typically you'll have small, firm, tender lumps (called buds) under one or both nipples when your breasts first start to grow. Over the next two years or so you'll find that your breasts will get larger and become less firm in texture.
If you feel uncomfortable about your breasts, or they are painful, you might try out a training bra to see if that will help you manage them. However, remember that your breasts can often feel painful right before the start of your period.
Hair will grow between your legs in your pubic area, this hair will be coarser and curly than hair on your head and may be darker. This is called pubic hair.
When puberty starts happening your body gets more sensitive to the hormone testosterone (girls have it as well as boys!). This hormone makes the glands in your skin produce too much oil. With dead skin blocking the little tubes where your hair grows through, the oil builds up to develop a white head or black head.
Sometimes bacteria can infect a blocked hair follicle, because the hormones change the levels of acid in your skin. This infection can create a spot or pustule.
Make sure that you keep your skin clean to prevent the build-up of oil. Wash twice a day with a mild cleanser. Avoid scrubbing hard at your face, because this will irritate your skin.
When you start puberty, your body begins to develop large sweat glands in your armpits, your breasts, and your genitals. These glands (called apocrine glands) release sweat when you're stressed, when you're highly emotional.
It's the apocrine glands that create body odor, so you'll need to keep those areas (armpits, breasts, genitals) clean, by washing with soap. This keeps bacteria from building up.
Change and wash your clothes regularly, especially the clothes that come into contact with the apocrine glands. These would be things like bra, shirts, and underwear.
Using an antiperspirant or deodorant each day can help mask or cut down on body odor. Antiperspirants reduce the amount of sweat your body produces. Deodorants use perfume to mask your body odor.
Shaving your armpits can also cut down on body odor. Armpit hair traps sweat and odor, which causes bacteria to multiply and create more body odor.
Hormones are the things that are making all the changes in your body and mental growth. Hormones also cause the wild mood swings and emotional turbulence that accompanies puberty.
Your hormones go to your ovaries (which are the two oval-shape organs to the right and left of your uterus). They trigger the growth and release of the eggs in your ovaries and the production the hormone called estrogen.
Estrogen matures your body and helps to prepare you for pregnancy.
Some of the mood swings you might experience are low self-esteem, aggression (feeling angry, often for no reason), depression, feeling happy one moment and angry or upset the next. The best thing you can do is acknowledge how you're feeling and find a quiet place to decompress, especially if you're feeling angry.
PMS (premenstrual syndrome) is often a big cause of your wildly fluctuating moods. This is because of the surge of hormones. You might have difficulty sleeping, feelings of irritability, anxiety, and cravings for certain foods (often sugar). Keeping track of your menstrual cycle can allow you to feel a little more sane during PMS, because you'll know that it's just your hormones.
Sometimes puberty can trigger real problems with your mood or your mental processes. If your mood seems out of control, or has taken over the rest of your life, you may need to speak to an adult to help you through this tough time. There's nothing wrong with asking for support during this phase in your life.
Why am I getting something white in my underwear if I haven't started puberty?
This discharge means you will get your period soon, usually within 6–12 months.