Puberty for boys can be a difficult time. As they adjust to the different things their bodies are doing, they can get aggravated. Taking the time to talk to your son about puberty can be so helpful. Spending a few minutes informing him about what happens during puberty can empower them. Even better, this conversation doesn’t have to be difficult.
How to talk to your son about puberty
When you are thinking about talking about puberty with your son, you might not realize that the conversation starts earlier than you might think. Talking to your son about puberty is an important conversation to have. I think before you really start to talk it can help to brush up on some of the basics. This will help you to have an educated conversation with your child.
When does puberty start for boys?
According to an article from NHS, the average boy starts puberty at the age of 12. However, the age range can be anywhere from 8 to 14 depending on the child. This will mean that the conversation about puberty and what to expect will need to start at or around eight. This will give them the ability to understand changes that might otherwise be confusing.
When does puberty end for boys?
According to an article by Medical News Today, puberty runs for two to five years. The bulk of growing happens roughly a year after puberty begins. Knowing there is an end in sight can be a huge help when talking about puberty with boys. They need to feel in control on some level and this is a great place to start.
What happens during puberty for boys?
When sitting down to talk about puberty for boys it can help to know what different things to expect. Take an honest look at the changes a boy can expect and decide how you want to discuss that issue. While the age it starts can vary, at the speed of puberty can change, many of the experiences are similar. Take some time to look through the list below and decide how you want to discuss each with your child.
- Changes to the penis and testicles – During puberty boys will experience a change in the size of their penis and testicals. They will also grow hair in their private areas that gets darker as they get older. Have an honest conversation about hygiene and caring for their private areas.
- Changes in height and body makeup – As boys go through puberty, their height and overall body makeup will change. You might start to see them grow inches at a time in height or outgrow shoes at a rapid rate. Remember to be kind. This is not their fault. While it can be a financial adjustment, boys can grow rapidly during puberty.
- Changes to their voice – As boys mature, their voices will change. This is a normal and natural part of the process. If their voice cracks, don’t mock them. Prepare them for this change and help them to understand this is a normal part of the process.
- Increased Oily Skin/Acne – Acne is a normal part of puberty and it can be frustrating for boys. Talking about personal hygiene and how to care for their skin can make a world of difference. If the acne gets bad, it can help to speak with a dermatologist to get a personalized skin care routine.
- Increased body odor – One of the biggest complaints you will ever get from a tween boy is the complaint about having to shower more. One of the biggest complaints as a parent, is the smell that comes from pubescent boy armpits. There’s really no rival for it. Daily showers may be required and make sure to discuss things like deodorant to help them avoid smells.
- Wet dreams – Nocturnal emmissions are typical from ages 12-16 with the average boy experiencing them around 13-14. When discussing puberty, this is a conversation that will need to be had. It may be time to introduce your son to doing their own laundry to avoid uncomfortable conversations should they have a night time emmission.
- Facial Hair – For the average boy, 12 to 14 is when they start to grow facial hair. Working on skills with grooming face hair is important. Talk through safety and how to shave and maintain mustaches and beards in a way that is safe.
Puberty and Doctor Visits
As your child gets closer to puberty, they will have a change in their well check doctor visits. Well check doctor visits will include conversations about physical development. It will also include conversations about sex and a discussion about the HPV vaccine. Plan to hold a conversation beforehand about what to expect. It can also help to discuss HPV and have “the talk” with your son before the doctor brings it up.
Looking for more?
- Free Printable Hygiene Checklist
- Moms Teach Sex Education – 10 Ways Moms fall short
- At what age should moms teach sex education?
- Teaching Kids About Sex | What should you teach kids about sex?