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7 Changes Everyone Will Experience Through Puberty

Puberty happens to everyone – it’s a part of growing up.
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1. Start to grow taller
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This may happen slowly and steadily – or in growth spurts; it might feel like you are literally growing out of your clothes and shoes overnight, and that one day you are looking up at the world and the next you are looking down on everyone.

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2. Start to grow hair in different places
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It can feel like hair is suddenly growing everywhere! – under your arms, on and between your legs, and if you are male, on your face and chest. Some people choose to shape or remove this hair by shaving, waxing or threading, other prefer to just go natural.

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3. Start to sweat more
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Sweating can lead to body odour (B.O), and no one wants to smell bad. You might find you need to wash more often, maybe wash, shower or bath every day. You can also start to use deodorant, it might take a few trials to find a product that works for your body and that smells good.

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4. Have greasier skin
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You might even start to get a few spots (check out Spots: Just The Facts) – try resisting the temptation and avoid squeezing them as it’ll only make them worse. There are lots of products on the market that can help manage greasy skin such as over-the-counter gels or creams (topical treatments) that contain benzoyl peroxide – again you might need to try a few before you find the one that suits you. If things are more serious, you might want to see your doctor and see if they can prescribe anything to help.

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5. Get greasier hair
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You might start to wash your hair more often as you might notice your hair becoming greasier.

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6. Have an interest in exploring relationships and sexuality
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This is a natural part of growing up, but it can be bewildering.

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7. Experience the 'Puberty Brain'
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Get mixed up feelings and experience mood changes. It’s normal to go through a rollercoaster of emotions as your mood changes – happy, sad, grumpy, tearful, angry, fed up, confused, and excited – all within the space of a minute! The teenage brain is a work in progress with the prefrontal cortex growing again just before puberty. This area of the brain is involved with controlling, planning, working memory, organisation, and modulating mood.

how to get help

If you have any more questions on this area or would like to speak to somebody about this topic, have a look at the links or search for your local services in the blue box below. Alternatively you can always contact your public health nurse.

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Find out what services are available to you in your area. Remember your school nurse is always there to give you confidential help and support.