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Chapter 10 – Reaching the Age of Adolescence

The following Topics and Sub-Topics are covered in this chapter and are available on MSVgo:

Introduction

Did you know humans and other animals can reproduce only after a certain age? Though growth begins from the time we are born, certain bodily changes need to occur before we attain reproductive maturity and reproduce. Let’s learn more about what these body changes are and what brings about these changes.

Every child around 11-12 years of age witnesses some changes in their body, which are a part of the growing process. This stage is called adolescence and indicates that you are now on your way to becoming an adult. This phase lasts till you turn 18-19 years and is also called the ‘teenage’. The phase of adolescence occurs in both boys and girls but begins a year or two early in girls.

During the adolescence phase, your body undergoes many different changes– physically and emotionally. These changes mark the onset of puberty. The main goal of puberty is to help you attain reproductive maturity. The stage of puberty ends at 18-19 years of age.

As mentioned earlier, puberty is the beginning of many changes that occur in your body that make you capable of reproduction. Here are the changes that you will notice:

  • Change in height

This is one of the foremost and the most conspicuous changes that occur during puberty. Growth in the long bones is seen, and you will grow tall and lanky. While girls begin to grow tall earlier, both sexes attain their maximum height by the age of 18 years.

  • Changes in body shape

Boys tend to have broader shoulders, wider chests, and growth in muscles, whereas girls’ bodies begin to curve in certain parts and the region below the waist becomes broader and wider.

  • Changes in voice

In boys, the voice becomes deeper and hoarser due to the development of their voice box, and the voice of girls becomes high-pitched.

  • Increased sweating

You will also notice the increase in sweating, pimples and acne on your skin. This happens due to an increase in the number of sweat or sebaceous glands during puberty.

  • Development of sex organs

In boys, male sex organs like penis and testes begin to develop, and the testes begin to produce sperms. In girls, their ovaries begin to mature and release eggs, and they undergo the monthly phenomenon of menstruation, where their uterine lining sheds.

  • Development of secondary sexual characters

Secondary sexual characters develop to help differentiate between a male and female. In boys, these include hair growth on the chest, face, armpits and public area, deepening of the voice. In girls, enlargement of breasts, growth of public hair, hair under armpits and a high-pitched voice.

Herein lies the question – what triggers these changes at puberty? Well, our body has an endocrine system that releases chemical substances called hormones.

  • Hormones are released directly into the bloodstream by endocrine glands as they are ductless, and they reach their ‘target’ organs to bring about the desired effect.
  • The male hormone testosterone is released by the cells in the testes and is responsible for the onset of puberty. This hormone is responsible for the growth in boys and the development of secondary sexual characteristics.
  • Similarly, in girls, the ovaries produce the female hormone oestrogen that triggers the development of secondary sexual characters and initiates the menstrual cycle. The first menstrual flow is called menarche.
  • The production of these male and female sex hormones are under the control of hormones released by the pituitary gland.

Apart from the testes, ovaries and the pituitary, our body has many other endocrine glands such as the thyroid, adrenal glands and the pancreas.

  • The thyroid gland produces the hormone thyroxine, pancreas produce insulin, and the adrenal glands produce adrenaline.
  • A deficiency in insulin production can result in diabetes and adrenaline produced by the adrenals is responsible for maintaining the salt and water balance in our body and helps us adjust to stressful situations like when we get angry, worried or upset.
  • The thyroid gland and the adrenals secrete their respective hormones on receiving orders from the pituitary gland.
  • The pituitary gland also secretes the growth hormone, which is essential for the growth of an individual.

Just like our body is controlled and managed by hormones, hormones also play a role in the life cycle of animals like insects and frogs. We know that butterflies and frogs undergo metamorphosis to complete their life cycle. Insects secrete hormones to enable metamorphosis, while thyroxine produced by the thyroid is responsible for metamorphosis in frogs. To form and secrete thyroxine, frogs require iodine to be present in the water. So, if the water in which the tadpoles are growing lacks iodine or sufficient iodine, the tadpoles cannot metamorphose into adult frogs!

While adolescence helps us transition from childhood to adulthood, and puberty marks its beginning, the reproductive phase in humans begins from here. The reproductive phase in humans is that phase wherein men and women can produce gametes, and the phase of production and maturation of gametes is longer in males than in females.

In girls, the reproductive phase of life begins at menarche, the first menstrual flow during puberty, and ends at menopause(the stoppage of menstruation) at 40-55 yrs of age. Hormones control the entire reproductive phase in women.

  • Why is adolescence also called Teenage?

Since adolescence usually begins around 11-12 years and completes around 18-19 years. As it covers the ‘teen’ ending years, it is also called as teenage.

  • What are the main problems of adolescence?

With sudden changes in the body, adolescent boys and girls phase many mental and emotional problems. This is why the teenage or adolescence is a difficult period for both children and parents.

  • Why is adolescence a difficult period?

Since adolescence is a phase between childhood and adulthood, the transition is often confusing to the children. The phase many different kinds of emotional problems and are trying to adjust to the changes occurring in the body. It is quite common to see them trying to fit in but finding it difficult to do so. At the same time, parents try their best to help their children through this phase. For these reasons, adolescence is a difficult period.

  • Which hormone is responsible for pubic hair?

Pubic hair is a secondary sexual character in both boys and girls. In boys, testosterone is responsible for pubic hair, whereas oestrogen causes the growth of it in girls.

  • What age does a boy become a man?

A boy is said to become a man at the end of puberty when he attains reproductive maturity. This occurs around 18-19 years of age.

  • At what age does puberty end for males?

Puberty for males ends around 18-19 years of age.

For more information on reaching the age of adolescence, download the MSVgo app or visit MSVgo.com.

Adolescence and puberty are important developmental stages in the life of an individual. While boys and girls undergo different changes during this phase, the ultimate goal is to attain reproductive maturity. At the same time, both the genders need to focus on living healthy in order to maintain good reproductive health.

High School Physics

  • Alternating Current
  • Atoms
  • Communication Systems
  • Current Electricity
  • Dual nature of Radiation and Matter
  • Electric Charges and Fields
  • Electricity
  • Electromagnetic Induction
  • Electromagnetic Waves
  • Electron Beams and Radioactivity
  • Electrons and Photons
  • Electrostatic Potential and Capacitance
  • Fluid Pressure
  • Force and Acceleration
  • Force And Laws Of Motion
  • Gravitation
  • Internal Energy
  • Kinetic Theory
  • Law of motion
  • Light – Reflection And Refraction
  • Magnetic Effects Of Electric Current
  • Magnetism and Matter
  • Management Of Natural Resources
  • Mechanical properties of Fluids
  • Mechanical properties of Solids
  • Motion
  • Motion in a plane
  • Motion in a straight line
  • Moving Charges and Magnetism
  • Nuclear Energy
  • Nuclei
  • Oscillations
  • Our Environment
  • Paths of Heat
  • Physical world
  • Ray optics and optical instruments
  • Semiconductor Devices
  • Semiconductor Electronics: Materials, Devices and Simple Circuits
  • Simple Machines
  • Sound
  • Sources Of Energy
  • Specific and Latent Heats
  • Spherical Mirrors
  • Static Electricity
  • Systems of Particles and Rotational motion
  • Thermal properties of matter
  • Thermodynamics
  • Units and Measurement
  • Vectors, Scalar Quantities and Elementary Calculus
  • Wave Optics
  • Waves
  • Work, Power and Energy

High School Chemistry

  • Acids, Bases and Salts
  • Alcohols, Phenols and Ethers
  • Aldehydes, Ketones and Carboxylic Acids
  • Aliphatic and Aromatic Hydrocarbons
  • Alkyl and Aryl Halides
  • Amines
  • Analytical Chemistry 
  • Atomic Structure
  • Atoms And Molecules
  • Basic concepts of Chemistry
  • Biomolecules
  • Carbon And Its Compounds
  • Carboxylic acids and Acid Derivatives
  • Chemical Bonding and Molecular Structures
  • Chemical Energetics
  • Chemical Equilibria
  • Chemical Kinetics
  • Chemical Reactions And Equations
  • Chemical Reactions and Their Mechanisms
  • Chemistry in Everyday Life
  • Chemistry of p-Block elements
  • Chemistry of Transition and Inner Transition
  • Classification of Elements
  • Coordination Compounds
  • Cyanide, Isocyanide, Nitro compounds and Amines
  • Electrochemistry
  • Electrolysis
  • Elements, Compounds and Mixtures
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Equilibrium
  • Ethers and Carbonyl compounds
  • Haloalkanes and Haloarenes
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Hydrogen
  • Ideal solutions
  • Introduction to Organic Chemistry
  • Ionic equilibria
  • Matter
  • Matter Around Us
  • Matter In Our Surroundings
  • Metallurgy
  • Metals And Non-Metals
  • Mole Concept and Stoichiometry
  • Natural Resources
  • Organic Chemistry – Basic Principles
  • Periodic Classification of Elements
  • Physical and Chemical Changes
  • Physical and Chemical Properties of Water
  • Polymers
  • Preparation, Properties and Uses of Compounds
  • Principles and Processes of Isolation of Elements
  • Redox Reactions
  • Relative Molecular Mass and Mole
  • States of Matter
  • Structure Of The Atom
  • Study of Compounds
  • Study of Gas Laws
  • Study of Representative Elements
  • Surface Chemistry
  • The d-block and f-block elements
  • The Gaseous State
  • The p-Block Elements
  • The Periodic Table
  • The s-Block Elements
  • The Solid State
  • Thermodynamics

High School Biology

  • Absorption and Movement of Water in Plants
  • Adolescent Issues
  • Anatomy of Flowering Plants
  • Animal Kingdom
  • Bacteria and Fungi-Friends and Foe
  • Biodiversity and Conservation
  • Biofertilizers
  • Biological Classification
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biomolecules
  • Biotechnology and its Applications
  • Biotic Community
  • Body Fluids and Circulation
  • Breathing and Exchange of Gases
  • Cell – Unit of Life
  • Cell Cycle and Cell Division
  • Cell Division and Structure of Chromosomes
  • Cell Reproduction
  • Cellular Respiration
  • Chemical Coordination and Integration
  • Circulation
  • Control And Coordination
  • Crop Improvement
  • Digestion and Absorption
  • Diversity In Living Organisms
  • Ecosystem
  • Environmental Issues
  • Excretory Products and their Elimination
  • Flowering Plants
  • Genes and Chromosomes
  • Health and Diseases
  • Health and Its Significance
  • Heredity And Evolution
  • Heredity and Variation
  • How Do Organisms Reproduce?
  • Human Diseases
  • Human Eye And Colourful World
  • Human Health and Disease
  • Human Population
  • Human Reproduction
  • Hygiene
  • Improvement In Food Resources
  • Integumentary System- Skin
  • Kingdom Fungi
  • Kingdom Monera
  • Kingdom Protista
  • Life Processes
  • Locomotion and Movement
  • Microbes in Human Welfare
  • Mineral Nutrition
  • Molecular Basis of Inheritance
  • Morphology of Flowering Plants
  • Neural Control And Coordination
  • Nutrition in Human Beings
  • Organism and Population
  • Photosynthesis
  • Photosynthesis in Higher Plants
  • Plant Growth and Development
  • Plant Kingdom
  • Pollination and Fertilization
  • Pollution; Sources and its effects
  • Principles of Inheritance and Variation
  • Reproduction and Development in Angiosperms
  • Reproduction in Organisms
  • Reproductive Health
  • Respiration in Human Beings
  • Respiration in Plants
  • Respiratory System
  • Sexual Reproduction in Flowering Plants
  • Strategies for Enhancement in Food Production
  • Structural Organisation in Animals
  • Structural Organisation of the Cell
  • The Endocrine System
  • The Fundamental Unit Of Life
  • The Living World
  • The Nervous System and Sense Organs
  • Tissues
  • Transpiration
  • Transport in Plants

High School Math

  • Algebra – Arithmatic Progressions
  • Algebra – Complex Numbers and Quadratic Equations
  • Algebra – Linear Inequalities
  • Algebra – Pair of Linear Equations in Two Variables
  • Algebra – Polynomials
  • Algebra – Principle of Mathematical Induction
  • Algebra – Quadratic Equations
  • Binomial Theorem
  • Calculus – Applications of Derivatives
  • Calculus – Applications of the Integrals
  • Calculus – Continuity and Differentiability
  • Calculus – Differential Equations
  • Calculus – Integrals
  • Geometry – Area
  • Geometry – Circles
  • Geometry – Conic Sections
  • Geometry – Constructions
  • Geometry – Introduction to Euclid’s Geometry
  • Geometry – Three-dimensional Geometry
  • Geometry – Lines and Angles
  • Geometry – Quadrilaterals
  • Geometry – Straight Lines
  • Geometry – Triangles
  • Linear Programming
  • Matrices and Determinants
  • Mensuration – Areas
  • Mensuration – Surface Areas and Volumes
  • Number Systems
  • Number Systems – Real Numbers
  • Permutations and Combinations
  • Probability
  • Sequence and Series
  • Sets and Functions
  • Statistics 
  • Trignometry – Height and Distance
  • Trignometry – Identities
  • Trignometry – Introduction

Middle School Science

  • Acids, Bases And Salts
  • Air and Its Constituents
  • Basic Biology
  • Body Movements
  • Carbon and Its Compounds
  • Cell – Structure And Functions
  • Changes Around Us
  • Chemical Effects Of Electric Current
  • Chemistry in Your Life
  • Coal And Petroleum
  • Combustion And Flame
  • Components Of Food
  • Conservation Of Plants And Animals
  • Crop Production And Management
  • Electric Current And Its Effects
  • Electricity And Circuits
  • Elements and Compounds
  • Fibre To Fabric
  • Food production and management
  • Force And Pressure
  • Forests: Our Lifeline
  • Friction
  • Fun With Magnets
  • Garbage In, Garbage Out
  • Getting To Know Plants
  • Health and Hygiene
  • Heat
  • Hydrogen
  • Life Processes: Nutrition in Animals and Plants
  • Light, Shadows And Reflections
  • Materials: Metals And Non-Metals
  • Matter and Its States
  • Metals and Non-metals
  • Micro Organisms: Friend And Foe
  • Motion And Measurement Of Distances
  • Motion And Time
  • Nutrition In Animals
  • Nutrition In Plants
  • Organization in Living Things
  • Our Environment
  • Physical And Chemical Changes
  • Pollution and conservation
  • Pollution Of Air And Water
  • Reaching The Age Of Adolescence
  • Reproduction In Animals
  • Reproduction In Plants
  • Respiration In Organisms
  • Rocks and Minerals
  • Separation Of Substances
  • Simple Machines
  • Soil
  • Some Natural Phenomena
  • Sorting Materials Into Groups
  • Sound
  • Stars And The Solar System
  • Structure of Atom
  • Synthetic Fibers And Plastics
  • The Living Organisms And Their Surroundings
  • Transfer of Heat
  • Transformation of Substances
  • Transportation In Animals And Plants
  • Universe
  • Waste-water Story
  • Water: A Precious Resource
  • Weather, Climate And Adaptations Of Animals To Climate
  • Winds, Storms And Cyclones

Middle School Math

  • Addition
  • Area and Its Boundary
  • Boxes and Sketches
  • Data Handling
  • Fun With Numbers
  • Heavy and Light
  • How Many
  • Long And Short
  • Mapping
  • Measurement
  • Money
  • Multiplication and Factors
  • Multiply and Divide
  • Numbers
  • Parts and Wholes
  • Pattern Recognition
  • Patterns
  • Play With Patterns
  • Rupees And Paise
  • Shapes And Angles
  • Shapes And Designs
  • Shapes and Space
  • Similarity
  • Smart Charts
  • Squares
  • Subtraction
  • Tables And Shares
  • Tenths and Hundredths
  • Time
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