Puberty is the process of physical changes through which a child’s body matures into an adult body capable of sexual reproduction to enable fertilization. It is initiated by hormonal signals from the brain to the gonads: the ovaries in a girl, the testes in a boy. Puberty starts as early as 8 or as late as 13, so do not be scared if you’re faster than your friends or they are faster than you are. Adolescence can be kind of challenging because you’re no longer a child, but you’re not yet an adult. The more aware you are of what’s happening, the easier and less confusing it will be. Here are few tips concerning puberty you should know.

Your boobs will start growing from as early as eight or as late as thirteen years old. The first stage starts during the early part of puberty, when a girl’s ovaries enlarge and estrogen, an important female hormone, begins to circulate in the body.

As your pelvis (the large bone across your hips) begins to grow, your hips get wider, your breasts develop and your waist gets smaller. In other words, girls’ bodies become softer and more shapely. Some girls also gain weight quickly during this time.

Your sweat glands will become larger and more active, and you’ll sweat more. This may happen even before your breasts develop.

During female puberty, the pores in your skin produce more oil, especially on your face. This can cause acne. You may have to wash your hair and face more often now that you’re going through puberty.

Before you start your period, you’ll probably notice yellow or white stains inside your underwear. This is natural moisture from the vagina. It’s perfectly normal and it’s a sign that menstruation will probably start in about six to 18 months. You could start wearing pant liners to help protect your panties.

The discharge may be heavy or barely noticeable — both are normal. However, if the discharge has a bad smell or you have any pain, soreness, or itching in the genital area, it may be a sign of infection. In this case, you should see a doctor

Menstruation can be very unpredictable for the first two years. It typically takes one to two years for cycles to develop, so you may not be regular for a while.

“Mood swings” are also common throughout puberty. This is when you feel really happy one minute and then really angry or even sad the next minute.

You may think you are weird but all these are only signs of puberty, you can talk to your parent or closer relative. If you are uncomfortable discussing is with your Mum or Teacher, you could to talk to someone you are more comfortable with. With time you’ll get used to your body and the changes.