This argumentative essay seeks to advance evidence to prove why it is that children across cultures arrive at puberty earlier than others. Pediatricians claim that it occurs between the ages of 10-13 in females and 12 -18 in males. It is the writer’s view point that early puberty is linked to a combination of physiological; socio-cultural and psychological factors. As such, in the following pages of this document a comprehensive discussion will ensue regarding the forgoing elements mentioned in this paragraph.
Physiology of early puberty.
In relation to this essay and the evidence put forward regarding physiological implications for children arriving at puberty early; the writer wishes to propose that inevitable genetic factors do not only create a difference among ages when individual children reach puberty, but there are global effects which mutate the cycles in biological processes of life.
If one were to think about the theory of evolution and apply it to the early puberty phenomenon it would be realized that in the same way man moved from the homosapien species of existence it is the same with puberty. How can we think that the biological clock will tick at the same pace for centuries on end? If the Milky Way galaxy is performing tasks more efficiently and accomplishing them earlier than they were previously, this is enough evidence to understand that humans are no different.
Physiologically puberty expresses as breast development in girls; pubic hair; thickening of the vagina and uterine cavities; production of eggs by the ovaries; menstruation and fertility establishment; broadening of hips; increased swearing and acne disruptions as well as growth spurts.
In boys these changes are recognized by increase in testicular size; function and establishment of fertility; retraction of penis foreskin; increase facial and body hair growth; deep voice tone and appearance of Adam’s apple and body shape development into a masculine contour.
However, research has shown where the physiological onset of puberty has dropped significantly since 1840. Pediatricians Tanner and Davis (2007) call it the ‘secular trend’ implying that there are distinct social factors beyond the physiological constituency influencing this early onset (Tanner & Davies, 2007).
Further a Denmark study conducted in 2006 revealed that breast enlargement in girls began as early as 9 years 10 months which showed one year difference from a study conducted in 1991.Suporting data reveals that between 1840-1950 there has been a persistent reduction in the age of puberty among Europe females( Jones, 2007).
Importantly, in1840 girls in Norway reached menarche at 17 years of age; France, 15 years and England 16years. Remarkable development showed where in Japan, 1945-1975 the age denoting onset of puberty dropped at a rate of 11 months per decade (Zuckerman, 2009). Medical scientists are still researching this phenomenon with a view of identifying the underlying reasons, which is causing some measure of concern since biological changes affect many other aspects of life. The answer is simple based on the thesis of this study. Change is the only constant in this universe. Early puberty is just a manifestation of this change.
Socio-cultural factors of Early puberty
With such enormous evidence to verify that early puberty is not merely a speculation, but an event occurring on our planet just like the earth revolving around the sun and stars falling to earth from time to time; researcher still must defy nature to have their physical input. In their’ effort to reconcile this work, sure, there must be some way in which they can declare authority as being superior in continuously conducting studies to prove what already exists and thereby make assumptions they call scientific.
Scientific studies have linked early puberty to various socio- cultural factors. These include diet, obesity; exercise as environmental issues. Regarding nutrition they have identified where surplus calories allow for the acceleration of body processes, especially, when food contain elements such as steroids and incidental hormones.
A major concern pointed towards the use of fertilizers in plants to enhance growth and similarly in animals for commercial purposes. The speculation is that there is an interrelationship among the actions of agriculturists with their products, the environment and consumers. Here it can be questioned that while there is evidence to link these factors to early puberty; the truth is that since 1840 insidiously this phenomenon was occurring when scientists did not dream of using fertilizers in plants neither steroids in chickens, cows, and pigs.
Therefore, why it is occurring? Precisely, it is the same explanations scientists offer for global warming and the ozone layer effects. Can’t we realize that the delicate balances of nature is paying us not attention and will do what it will in the presence of the inevitable which is change? Mankind lives in an age where it becomes necessary to hypothesize, prove hypothesis and make assumptions which are authentic only for the moment because we live in a dimension of inevitable change.
So how impacting is diet, obesity, the environment as a place and concept to early puberty? Further scientific evaluations have assumed that this change should not be happening because girls will be affected by ill health during adult hood. It might be the same basis for the assumption that if a woman reaches menopause early too. Still some women in the twenty first century do not have hysterectomies for aesthetics purposes and they menstruate way in their fifties without any serious illness.
Then how pediatricians; gynecologists; dieticians, nutrionsts explain this issue of early puberty to a curios twenty first century world population without internalizing it as a side effect of human intervention? Come on let us face it; always arguments have been that mankind has influenced change. Yes it is so but no more can influence the inevitable more than the inevitable itself. As such, in this writer’s opinion early puberty will occur. As we progress from one phase of our human development as did the homosapien the puberty will even come sooner.
Conclusion- The psychology of early puberty
In concluding this essay the writer wishes to posit that the physiology and socio cultural implications of early puberty are closely linked to the psychology of being. Someone said that the body in the mind and not the mind in the body. Further, it has been proposed that even though psychologists’ have studied many aspects of the brain they can never tap into the true activities of mind even when psychoanalysis is conducted.
Inevitable genetic factors do not only create a difference among ages when individual children reach puberty, but there are global effects which mutate the cycles in biological processes of life. Perhaps, the global effects are realized whereby in Norway girls reached menarche at 17 years of age; France, 15 years; England 16years and in Japan, 1945-1975 the age denoting onset of puberty dropped at a rate of 11 months per decade (Zuckerman, 2009).
It can be deducted then from a commonsense perspective that there is an element of life outside the physical; and socio-cultural that in influencing this development in our world among children. Importantly, it is not limited to puberty but is depicted in every area of life. Precisely, puberty is just one aspect of the evolution of the human species we are experiencing and it is heartening that sociologists, medical scientists, psychologists environmentalists join in the realization that not only is the earth is moving and changing course so is the human body and all it functions
Tanner, JM; Davies, PS. “Clinical longitudinal standards for height and height velocity for North
American children.” The Journal of pediatrics (2007), Vol 107 (3): 317–329. Print
Jones, Kenneth W. “Smith’s Recognizable Patterns of Human Malformation’ St. Louis, Mo:
Elsevier Saunders (2006). Print
Zuckerman, Diana “Early Puberty in Girls”. National Research Center for Women and Families.
(2009) Web.Retreieved (4th Dec, 2011) from