The toddler years of your child when his favorite word was ‘No’ and he used to resist everything, rebel and cry to exercise his will seem easier when your children enter puberty. Children usually enter the stages of puberty between the ages of 9 to 16 years old, which is characterized by great physical, hormonal and emotional changes, in your children. Children gain sudden height and weight, their sweat glands become more active and odorous, oil glands become more active resulting in acne and hormones such as estrogen in girls and testosterone in boys are produced.
There is growth of hair in armpits, legs and pubic areas and girls will have a cycle of their producing ovarian eggs, vaginal discharges and menstrual periods, which will enable them to bear children later. Their breast sizes may grow. Boys and girls become self-conscious about their appearances. Boys usually enter puberty between the ages of 13 to 15 and they may suddenly grow tall and their shoulders become broader. Boys voice crack and becomes hoarse and penis, scrotum and testes grown and change appearances. Boys may have wet dreams or nocturnal ejaculations, which are perfectly normal. Parents should not embarrass their children by pointing out these changes but reassure them that they are just the natural process of maturity.
This is also the time when boys and girls should know about impregnation, STDs and how to avoid unwanted pregnancy and learn responsible behavior. While whining or rejecting advice of parents or mood swings in girls due to hormonal changes may be natural and unavoidable, you need to draw line at inappropriate behavior and what is unacceptable as a parent. Moodiness is generally a part of puberty but you need to emphasize and stand firm that you would not allow them to talk back to you unnecessarily. As a growing man or woman, girls or boys may tend to take liberties but parents need to be consistent that you will certainly not allow your early teen to take your for granted and they need to remember that you have survived your puberty, and they have to do so too.