Patti Neighmond at NPR News: Like Girls, Boys Are Entering Puberty Earlier

It’s been known for awhile that girls start puberty earlier than they did in the past, sometimes as young as 7 or 8. But it’s been unclear whether boys also go through puberty earlier. Now, a study from the American Academy of Pediatrics helps answer that question.

Marcia Herman-Giddens is a public health researcher at the University of North Carolina. She did the original studies looking at early puberty in girls. Now, she’sreplicated those studies with more than 4,000 boys. And the findings are similar: Boys are entering puberty six months to two years earlier than they did in past studies.

There are racial differences. Caucasian boys tend to begin puberty, on average, around 10 years old while African American boys tend to begin puberty at 9.

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