|No Two Women Are Alike|
Each woman is different and this section is targeted at women! Here you will find basic information about life changes, emotional changes and other changes that are rarely talked about. We will discuss diversity of breast size, masturbation and sexual desire.
In this section you will find information on:
People talk about puberty like it's a thing we all understand. In fact, puberty is different for everyone and the only thing that is certain for everyone is that going through 'puberty' means that your body will change.
You may find that your thoughts and also dreams become sexual and that you start to become curious about sex. Your body can respond to these thoughts and emotions in many ways and sometimes these may be embarrassing, examples are:
Understanding what you are feeling, the changes you are experiencing and communicating this to others, may or may not be easy at times. If you have a friend, a parent, teacher or someone else you trust, keep them in mind if you are struggling, confused or frustrated and need someone to talk to.
Not all women experience the menstrual cycle, but most do. The 'menstrual cycle' is the name given to the changes of hormones within the body that cause the womb lining building up and breaking down (period/bleeding), and the ovaries releasing ovarian eggs (ovulation). This can begin at any age but usually begins between the ages of 12-16. The cycle is also called the monthly cycle as the average time from one period to the next is about 28-30 days.
The 'menopause' is the name given to the period of time after puberty when the hormones within the body change again. This is usually after a woman has released all her ovarian eggs (the average is one per month), and the menstrual cycle begins to stop. This can happen at any age, but usually between the ages of 45-60. This is also called 'the change of life'. It can also be caused by removal of the ovaries.
As well as periods becoming erratic; lighter, heavier, more frequent, less frequent, longer or shorter; you may also experience symptoms similar to those you may have experienced during puberty:
There may be a change in the libido, some women experience a higher desire for sexual pleasure after menopause and some women experience a lower desire for sexual pleasure after menopause. Menopause does not have to signify the end of your sexual activity, only your reproductive ability.
Your body will change throughout your life, it never stops changing. Some changes are due to ageing, some because of changes in circumstances or lifestyle and others may have a medical reason.
During puberty there are a lot of changes that happen over a few years. Some of the things you may experience include:
These body changes can have an effect on your day to day living. You may suddenly experience a phase of being self conscious; you may find you are overly aware of different parts of your body. Females who are experiencing body changes because of puberty can often experience mood swings without realising it. Learning to manage your mood swings and their effect can take time so be patient with yourself.
Some of the things you may experience throughout your life include:
Some of these changes are due to simply getting older; others can be brought about through experience, lifestyle, stress, environmental factors and health. Please refer to our other pages in this women's sexual health section for more information or contact your medical professional if you experience anything that causes you concern, including:
Many women worry that their breasts are smaller than other women's. This may be because we do not have a realistic idea of what other women's breasts actually look like.
Most females rub or stimulate their clitoris or vagina to get aroused or have an orgasm. Masturbation can start at any age but a female may not be able to orgasm until during or after puberty. You can however, experience pleasure without orgasm.