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Question
Posted by: Nic | 2010/05/04

Daughters puberty

Hello Doctor,

My daughter, aged 9 and a half has for some time now started developing vaginal hair. She has only recently though started with underarm hair. I know that 9 is not too early for this, although she is only in Grade 3, her little friends look so young. She does too, but I worry that we must get off to the right start with this puberty business. My mom spoke to me about a year before I had my periods, but did not mention about shaving and bras and so I was about 12 before I started shaving and wearing bras (even though I should have for years before that). I dont want my daughter to be teased or get embarressed by the underarm hairs so I would like to know what you suggest to begin with - shaving or waxing? I want her to feel healthy, be healthy and know she is looking after herself. Also, when will her periods start? She has absolutely no breast buds yet. When will the moods begin? The sexual emotions etc? She is still such a well adjusted, sweet, young little girl. What can I expect?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberDoc

Hallo Nic
Not two women would develop exactly the same but
sometime between ages 8 and 11 hormones signal the ovaries and other internal reproductive organs to start growing. Between ages 9 and 15. the darker area around the nipple known as the areola and then the breasts increase in size and develop a more rounded shape. While still sparse, pubic hair, which grows between the legs, becomes darker and coarser. Body fat continues to round body contours as growth in height continues. Normal vaginal discharge becomes noticeable. Acne may appear as sweat and oil glands become more active. Between ages 10 and 16 both the areola and nipples grow. Pubic hair begins to take a triangular shape and underarm hair appears. The first menstrual flow or period occurs. Growth in height occurs more slowly. Between ages 12 and 19 breasts approach adult size and shape and pubic hair spreads to the top of the thighs. The voice may deepen slightly and menstrual cycles gradually become more regular.
I think using the chemical hair removers like Veet works better for the younger girls - just test first on a small patch on inside of the elbow that she is not allergic to it.
Dr Bets

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: D | 2010/05/04

Hi Nic
My daughter is now 13 yrs old. What i have found in my experience is that the girls at school tend to talk amongst themselves and so your daughter will probably one day come to you and ask for a bra - or you could casually ask her if she would like one, when you are in the underwear dept (when you feel she needs to start wearing one - my daughter started last year. Also, her periods started when she was 12 - but not properly though, just light coloured spotting every 3 months or so. This year they have started properly, although not yet in a 28 day cycle and I have noticed that her ''moods'' have started round this time, and that she becomes tired and needs an afternoon nap. Hope this helps!

Reply to D
Posted by: Cyberdoc | 2010/05/04

Hallo Nic
Not two women would develop exactly the same but
sometime between ages 8 and 11 hormones signal the ovaries and other internal reproductive organs to start growing. Between ages 9 and 15. the darker area around the nipple known as the areola and then the breasts increase in size and develop a more rounded shape. While still sparse, pubic hair, which grows between the legs, becomes darker and coarser. Body fat continues to round body contours as growth in height continues. Normal vaginal discharge becomes noticeable. Acne may appear as sweat and oil glands become more active. Between ages 10 and 16 both the areola and nipples grow. Pubic hair begins to take a triangular shape and underarm hair appears. The first menstrual flow or period occurs. Growth in height occurs more slowly. Between ages 12 and 19 breasts approach adult size and shape and pubic hair spreads to the top of the thighs. The voice may deepen slightly and menstrual cycles gradually become more regular.
I think using the chemical hair removers like Veet works better for the younger girls - just test first on a small patch on inside of the elbow that she is not allergic to it.
Dr Bets

Reply to Cyberdoc

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