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This site is designed to support and expand the Hillendale Health Curriculum.


Learning about how your body grows and develops and how to take care of your body is an important part of Hillendale Health class. The following information deals with the changes that occur to a boy's body especially the reproductive system as boys go through puberty. Find information by reading the information below or click on the contents button to look for answers to specific questions.

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Male Reproductive System

When boys reach puberty the pituitary gland sends a message to the testicles to start producing a hormone called testosterone. Testosterone is an important male hormone that causes some important changes to take place in a boy's body. This production of testosterone during puberty and the changes it causes can start as early as age eight or nine or as late as age 15 or 16. The average ages for boys to begin the physical changes of puberty is between 12-14. Remember everyone is different and your body will change when it's right for you.

testicles

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As the
testosterone levels increase in a boy's body, he'll begin to develop hair on his body and face. His penis and testicles will grow. He will grow in height, his shoulders will broaden and he'll begin to develop more muscles. As the hormone levels increase even more, his voice will deepen and his testicles will start producing sperm cells. These changes do not occur overnight. It usually takes at least five to six years for all of these physical changes to take place.

What is an erection?

During puberty, boys may notice that their penis may get stiff or hard more often. This is called an erection. From babies to older men males can have erections. During puberty boys will experience more frequent erections because of the increase in the hormone testosterone. Erections may happen in response to physical or emotional stimulation, or sometimes an erection happens for no reason at all---maybe while riding along in a bus or running on the track. This is entirely normal and happens to a lot of boys. These erections can last from a few seconds to a few minutes and aren't as noticeable to others as a boy might think.

How does an erection happen?

The penis is made of a soft sponge like tissue called erectile tissue. This specialized erectile tissue has the ability to absorb extra blood when there is an increased blood flow to the penis. When more blood than usual flows into the blood vessels of the penis the penis becomes larger and harder and stands away from the body. This is an erection.


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Next Page

What are the testicles and scrotum?
What is an ejaculation?
How do the sperm cells get out of the body?

Puberty | Contents | Glossary | Phys Ed | Health | Site Map | Index | Being Born

Male Reproductive System | Female Reproductive System | Review