Boys are hitting puberty as early as 9 years old.
Research has shown that girls are reaching puberty earlier than they used to, and now the same appears to be true of boys. Boys are entering puberty somewhere between six months and two years earlier than the textbooks think, according to a new study. In the earliest cases, African-American boys reach puberty just after age 9, with whites and Hispanics about a year later.
The research doesn’t say why, notes HealthDay, and researchers call for more study into the question. They mention diet, obesity, a lack of physical exercise, and a host of environmental factors as possible culprits. “We have now a huge discrepancy between when the body starts to mature physically and when overall maturity is achieved,” says the study’s author. “So, there may be a big and growing gap here, which can cause all sorts of concern for guidance and teaching.”
Photo credit: The Guardian