What is precocious puberty?
Precocious puberty is when the signs of puberty begin before the age of seven or eight years in girls and before the age of nine years in boys. When this happens, it is advised to consult a pediatrician to rule out any serious causes and help manage the effects of precocious puberty.
The effects of precocious puberty
Early puberty can affect the child emotionally and socially. Children with precocious puberty may be confused or conscious about the changes in their bodies. They may have changes in emotions and behavior, and they need guidance on how to navigate through these changes. Girls could be concerned about getting periods and can become moody and irritable. Boys may become more aggressive and develop a sex drive inappropriate for their age. Girls who attain puberty early may be at a higher risk of sexual abuse, hence it is important to educate children. It may also be a good idea to seek the help of the teacher at school, a counselor or a psychologist.
Precocious puberty causes a growth spurt in the child, making them taller than their peers. However, their bone growth stops at an earlier age than other kids. They stop growing in height sooner and end up shorter in height than they would have otherwise been.