Just attended a Candor puberty program but still have questions?

We're here to help! Below you'll find some answers to many of the questions that we've heard students (just like you) have had after our puberty programs!

Here are some areas many students still have some questions on:

General Puberty Info


How long does puberty last?
When will you know puberty is done?
Does puberty hurt?


Periods & Sperm Info


How will I know when I have my period?
What if I get my period at school?
What happens when you don't have sperm?


Body Hair & Body Odor Info


Why do we grow more hair during puberty?
How much hair will grow during puberty?
Why do we get body odor?


Skin/Acne Info


Will I get acne?
Why does acne form?
How do I stop a pimple from happening?


Other Puberty Changes


Why does my voice change?
Why am I moody?
How much will I grow during a growth spurt?


General Information About Puberty

How do I know if puberty has started?

There are usually eight major changes that show you "may" be starting puberty:

Acne Reproduction system begins to function
Breast development Growth spurt
Body odor Hair growth
Emotional changes Voice change

How do I know when puberty is done?

It varies from person to person.

Puberty is complete when all eight changes have occurred and your body is no longer growing.

When does puberty start & how long does it last?

Each person will have their own unique experience.

Puberty can begin anywhere from the ages of 8-16 yrs. On average puberty takes 5 years to complete. We are all different. Many physical changes occur during that time and how those changes occur differ from one person to the next.

Does puberty hurt?


Growing pains are real, and some people experience some discomfort from time to time as their body grows and changes. Trusted adults can always help alleviate discomfort, so do not hesitate to reach out to them when help is needed.

Information About Periods & Sperm

Period Information

A person will know their period has arrived by either noticing a pinkish red or brownish red stain in the underwear.  This bloody fluid may also appear on toilet tissue after a person wipes themself.

Most people lose between 2-3 tablespoons of blood during their period.  People with heavy periods may lose twice as much.

Some people have cramping in the abdomen just before and during their menstrual cycle.  Cramps can be mild for some and very strong for others.  Anytime you feel pain you should confide in a trusted adult.  There are things they can do to help alleviate the pain that may come from a menstrual cycle.

During your period, the uterus contracts to help push out the lining that is not needed.  Chemicals in your body trigger these uterine muscle contractions, causing cramps. Not all menstruators will experience cramps.

First periods, and at the start of each menstrual cycle, the menstrual flow is not usually heavy, so you will likely know before your clothes become stained.

Teachers, counselors, and school nurses can be very helpful in supporting you at school if you need menstrual supplies, changes of clothes or support. Some students build a menstrual supply kit they keep at school (in a locker or backpack) containing menstrual supplies they can use if needed.

No. Tampons are just one of many different menstrual supply options.  Each person gets to decide for themselves what option is best. A trusted adult can be helpful in finding the best menstrual supply for you.

There are directions on how to use a tampon inside the box they are sold in.  Trusted adults, like parents and doctors can be very helpful in explaining how tampons work and answering additional questions.

Learning how to use a tampon can take some practice, just like anything new does. If it is put in incorrectly, it may feel uncomfortable. Just take it out and try again with a new one later.

Yes, and swimming, like other forms of physical activity (dancing, running, soccer), can decrease cramps. Win win!

Sperm Information

What is sperm?

Sperm is a reproductive cell.

Sperm is a reproductive cell that is produced by the testicles. Sperm is needed to create new life.

What is semen?

Semen is the fluid that contains sperm.

Semen is released from the penis in what is known as an ejaculation.

Why don't men have sperm when they are born?

Sperm is produced after puberty starts.

Testicles only start to produce sperm when puberty begins.

If I injure my testicle will I be able to produce sperm?

The body is resilient.

The body is resilient and often can recover from injury without any long-term side effects.
Whether or not you can produce sperm is only a question your doctor can answer.

Body Hair & Body Odor Information

Why do we grow more hair during puberty?


Hormones or chemical messengers released during puberty will result in hair growing on parts of the body where it was not before. Hair will grow in the private or pubic area, under the arm pits, and for some, on the face, chest, back and legs.

How much hair will grow during puberty?

We're all different.

It is normal for some people to have more body hair and others less. We are all different.

What do I do when hair starts to grow?

Body hair is normal.

Having body hair is normal. Some people choose to remove hair and some do not. Be sure to speak with a trusted adult to get permission before removing hair, and to learn how to do it.

Why do we get body odor?

More sweat with different chemicals.

Body odor is caused by a mix of sweat and bacteria on your skin. During puberty the body starts producing more sweat, and produces different chemicals in the sweat that gives it a stronger smelling odor. Body odor continues throughout your lifetime.

Acne During Puberty...It Happens.

Will I get acne?


Acne is a normal part of puberty and is something all people experience, even beyond their teen years. An increase in hormones during puberty can trigger outbreaks. During puberty, oil and sweat glands are also more active, which can contribute to clogging pores and causing acne.

How do I care for pimples I have now?

Don't touch them.

Do not pick or touch the infected area. Continue to wash your face in the morning and at night. Using an over-the-counter acne cream or gel can be helpful but be sure to talk to your trusted adult and follow all directions. Some people may find that they need extra support from their doctor or dermatologist.

Why does acne form?

When your pores become clogged.

Acne forms when the small holes or pores in our skin become clogged with oil, dirt, and/or bacteria. During puberty, hormones, sweat and oil production increases which can lead to more acne.

How do I stop a pimple from happening?

Starts with keeping your skin clean.

Preventing pimples begins with keeping the face and skin clean. Washing the face gently 2x a day with a mild soap and lukewarm water and bathing or showering regularly can help prevent acne.

How long does acne last?

No one knows.

No one knows exactly how long acne will last for each person. Many teens will find their acne improves as they get older and almost disappears by the time they reach their twenties. Others have acne into their adult years.

Other Changes Happening During Puberty

Emotional Changes

Hormonal shifts that occur during puberty play a major role in how teens think and feel. As pre-teens and teens mature, they can experience increased irritability, intense sadness, and frequent frustration due to the chemical changes occurring within their bodies and brain.

There are many ways to deal with emotional changes that come along with puberty. The key is finding what works best for YOU.

Exercise in any form, journaling, talking to someone, spending time with people you enjoy, are all helpful in dealing with emotional changes.

Keep in mind that sometimes, emotional challenges can be too big for a person to figure out on their own. Trusted adults can be key in helping navigate challenging times. Not only do they have life experience, but they care about you and want the best for you.

Sometimes we hurt people, intentionally and/or unintentionally by our words and/or our actions. What is important is taking responsibility and apologizing when we do make a mistake.

Growth Spurt

A growth spurt is a rapid increase in growth. Once puberty begins, there is a sharp increase in growth of about 8 cm a year (averages in non-growth spurt years are typically 6 cm per year)

The best way to tell about how tall you will be is to look at the height of your parents and other close family members such as grandparents, aunts and uncles. If they are tall, you will likely be tall and if they are shorter there is a good chance you will be as well.

The timing on a person's growth spurt varies, just like the timing of puberty in general. A person will continue to grow until puberty ends.

Voice Changes

During puberty the larynx (voice box) grows and moves lower down your neck. Vocal cords also lengthen and thicken. These changes result in a deeper voice. The change is more noticeable for those individuals with a greater amount of the hormone testosterone.

Voice change happens to everyone, although it is more noticeable in some than others.

Breast Tissue

All people have breast tissue. How it grows depends on which hormone a person’s body produces more of.

People with more estrogen have a greater amount of breast tissue. When it grows, it grows out in front of the body. People with more testosterone typically have less breast tissue and it will stretch from side to side as shoulders broaden.

Breast tissue can be sore and tender while it grows

Some stores have sales associates that can measure a person for a bra that is supportive and comfortable. Another option is having a trusted adult help assist in finding the right fit and style for you.

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