Growth spurt is a period of rapid growth among boys and girls between the ages of 10 to 16 years. It is a period of transition from childhood to adulthood. This period is also referred as adolescence or puberty. Every parent should be well aware of growth spurt as various bodily changes occur at physical and psychological level in their child.
Nearly half of the growing period in man occurs during teenage. During the period of growth spurt, the child begins to grow tall and by the end of physical maturity he attains his adult height.Growth spurt and development during puberty must be considered separately for boys and girls. Some parameters of growth are differed in boys and girls from early infancy. On average boys are larger than girls from birth.
Average Age Of Growth Spurts In Boys
The average age at which puberty begins in boys is 11 to 12 years. The end of puberty is not clearly delineated and may vary with the physical, emotional, mental, social and cultural criteria to define an adult boy. However, it usually gets complete at around the age of 17 to 18.The word puberty is used to designate the continuum of maturation. In girls the pubertal age begins slight earlier between 10 and 11 and it completes at the age of 16 or 17.
During this period a male child has maximum growth of its height. For the first few years of puberty, boys grow up to 4 inches of height in a year. At the end of puberty height stops growing, because the growth plates of bones get fused. There are several factors that determine height; some certainly are genetic, nutritional, exercise and rest. However, muscles continue to develop even after adolescent years.
Signs Of Growth Spurts In Boys
Other changes that occur during the growth spurt among boys are:
- Enlargement in the size of testis and scrotum followed by an increase in the size of penis.
- Appearance of hair in pubic and under arm area. Growth of hair in facial area. There is a sparse growth of hair in pubic area close to the time of early enlargement of testes and penis. The hair then becomes dark and more pigmented within a year’s time. And over the next two to three years more curly and extensive. Axillary and facial hair appears two years after development of pubic hair.
- The voice quality changes. It becomes deep and more prominent.
- About one third of boys may have some amount of swelling in breast with a small tender lump of tissue located centrally behind the nipple. This may persist for several months.
- Addams apple becomes enlarged and prominent.
- Production of sperm in testicles. Nocturnal emission for the first time occurs about a year after the beginning of secondary reproductive changes.