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    Stress To Obesity, Expert Shares 7 Reasons For Early Puberty In Kids

    Puberty is a confusing stage for kids. If it happens prematurely, that could be the indication of underlying issues which need to be looked at. If you suspect early puberty in your child, you must consult a doctor. 
    • Krati Purwar
    • Editorial
    Updated at - 2023-03-02,07:25 IST
    reasons for early puberty in kids

    More and more kids are experiencing puberty at an early stage. It has become worrisome because it indicates underlying issues - inherited, psychological, social or medical. 

    Premature puberty means an early end of childhood and the onset of adolescence when the kid is not ready to deal with bodily and hormonal changes. We spoke to Dr Santosh Kumar, paediatrician, and neonatologist at Motherhood Hospitals in Bengaluru, to understand the reasons of early puberty among children these days. 

    Definition Of Puberty

    definition of puberty

    “Puberty is a natural process that marks the transition from childhood to adulthood,” Dr Kumar said. A kid experiences significant physical and emotional changes, including growth spurts, alteration in body shape and development of secondary sexual characteristics. 

    While puberty typically begins between the ages of eight and 13 in girls and nince and 14 in boys, some children may experience early puberty, which is defined as the onset of puberty before the age of eight in girls and nine in boys. 

    7 Reasons Why Early Puberty May Occur In Kids


    Genetics drives the timeline for when your kid would experience puberty. Research suggests it may be linked to specific genes. “If a child has a family history of early puberty, they may be more likely to experience it themselves,” Dr Kumar added. 

    Environmental Factors

    environmental factors

    Environmental factors such as exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals can also contribute to early puberty. These chemicals are found in plastics, pesticides and some cosmetics too. Exposure to these chemicals can disrupt the body's natural hormonal balance, which can lead to early puberty among kids. Therefore, parents must stay cautious of what their children are using on their skin or eating. 


    “Obesity has been linked to early puberty in girls and boys,” Dr Kumar shared. Research suggests that excess body fat can increase levels of oestrogen, triggering early puberty among kids.

    Children who are overweight or obese are likely to experience puberty earlier than those in a healthy weight range.

    Health Conditions

    health conditions puberty

    Certain health conditions, for example, ailments that affect the pituitary gland, such as tumours or infections, can disrupt the production of hormones that regulate puberty. Parents must be watchful of symptoms and must consult a doctor if anything doesn’t sit right. 

    Other conditions that may contribute to this situation include thyroid disorders, adrenal gland disorders and diabetes.

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    Nutrition plays a crucial role in a child's development, including physical and sexual health. A diet with high amounts of processed foods and sugar, while being low on essential nutrients can significantly disrupt hormone levels.

    It can potentially lead to early puberty. If a diet is rich in fruits, vegetables and lean protein, it can support and promote hormonal balance. This stands true for adults too. 


    stress and puberty

    Stress can also contribute to early puberty in children. High levels of stress cause hormonal imbalance, which can be the reason behind early puberty. Children who experience chronic stress caused by bullying or family conflict may become mature a little early and start witnessing changes in their bodies.

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    Early Exposure To Sexual Content

    Research suggests children who are exposed to sexual content through media, such as television or the internet, at an early stage can experience premature adolescence compared to others. 

    “This is because exposure to sexual content can stimulate the release of hormones that trigger puberty,” Dr Kumar added.

    If you suspect that your child may be experiencing early puberty, you must speak with a paediatrician to determine the underlying cause and select a treatment plan. You can navigate your confused and scared kid through this phase with the right care and support.




    Your skin and body like you are unique. While we have taken all measures to ensure that the information provided in this article and on our social media channels is credible and expert verified, we recommend you consult a doctor or your dermatologist before trying a home remedy, quick hack or exercise regime. For any feedback or complaint, reach out to us at

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