Friday, 25 January 2013

Puberty In India

Puberty  In India

What is Puberty?

Puberty is the process of physical changes by which a child's body matures into an adult body capable of sexual reproduction to enable fertilisation. It is initiated by hormonal signals from the brain to the gonads; the ovaries in a girl, the testes in a boy. In response to the signals, the gonads produce hormones that stimulate libido and the growth, function, and transformation of the brain, bones, muscle, blood, skin, hair, breasts, and sexual organs. Physical growth—height and weight—accelerates in the first half of puberty and is completed when the child has developed an adult body. Until the maturation of their reproductive capabilities, the pre-pubertal, physical differences between boys and girls are the genital the penis and the vagina.
On average, girls begin puberty at ages 10-11; boys at ages Girls usually complete puberty by ages 15 -17, while boys usually complete puberty by ages 16–17. The major landmark of puberty for females is menarche, the onset of menstruation, which occurs on average between ages 12-13 for males, it is the first ejaculation, which occurs on average at age 13 In the 21st century, the average age at which children, especially girls, reach puberty is lower compared to the 19th century, when it was 15 for girls and 16 for boys. This can be due to any number of factors, including improved nutrition resulting in rapid body growth, increased weight and fat deposition, or exposure to endocrine disruptors such as xenoestrogens, which can at times be due to food consumption or other environmental factors. Puberty which starts earlier than usual is known as precocious puberty. Puberty which starts later than usual is known as delayed puberty. the word puberty describes the physical changes to sexual maturation, not the psychosocial and cultural maturation denoted by the term a "adolescent development" in Western culture, wherein adolescence is the period of mental transition from childhood to adulthood, which overlaps much of the body's period of puberty. According to a recent study done at the University Hospital in Copenhagen, an increasing number of girls are reaching puberty before the age of 10, exposing them to a greater long- term risk of breast cancer and raising fears of more sexual activity. A similar trend has been noticed in India too. Four years ago a survey conducted by Federation of Obstetrics' and Gynaecologists' Society of India ( FOGSI) found that the age at which girls attain sexual maturity in urban India has dropped. And 80 percent of the girls in cities are reaching puberty around age 11 - two years earlier than in the past.


Young girls in India menstruating for the first time are considered impure and are excluded from social life. Tradition dictates they are not allowed into the family home and many are forced to stop going to school
It's a common tradition in many parts of India to make menstruating girls sit outside the house for five days at a stretch. She sat at the doorway under a temporary shelter made of banana leaves.
A combination of factors such as lack of physical activity, diet, environmental chemicals, hormonal changes, physiology- PUBERTY MUCH EARLIER call and psychological changes are being blamed for the early onset of puberty.
The good news is that most of the doctors don't see early puberty as a disturbing trend, as there aren't reliable studies proving the long- term risk. However, the word of caution given by doctors is to handle young girls with sensitivity. " The trend is here to stay, so our children should be equipped to handle this phase in a better way. Now we have to give importance to sex education in school curriculum.
Boys and Girls are hitting puberty much earlier than before, according to a study more than 80 per cent of urban Indian girls hit puberty at the age of 11. And now experts say this comes with a risk of behavioural issues. And its not just girls, boys too are maturing faster than before.
Reason for approaching puberty early age.
Sedentary lifestyle or the lack of physical exercise, obesity and at times the cause can even be your genes.
Parental Guidance
Parents should make sure to give balanced nutritional diet to their children. child should be on a healthy balanced diet, and that they are also getting enough physical exercise.

School drop-outs
Today, the practice still continues in rural areas and in poor or less educated families in India. But it's limited to girls having their period for the first time. Some stay away from school during their menstruation because they cannot afford proper menstrual protection like sanitary napkins.
Sex education not part of Indian culture?
Equip the girls with more awareness on how to behave around strangers and how to identify sex abuse, so they can prevent or report such incidents.
a complete education on the female anatomy, puberty-related changes and sexuality would not be appropriate, because discussing these issues openly is not part of Indian culture.  BUT NOW TIME HAS COME TO CHANGE THE BEHAVIOUR TOWARDS THIS .

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