When a girl's body starts to change (puberty) 73
A young girl’s breasts start to grow when she is between 9 and 15 years old. You
do not have to be shy or self-conscious of your breasts. They are a sign your
body is changing into a woman’s body. One of your breasts may start to grow
before the other, but the smaller breast almost always catches up. Do not be
alarmed if your breasts do not look exactly alike. Many women have breasts that
are slightly different in size or shape from the other. And if your breasts look
different from another girl’s breasts, that’s just the way breasts are. They come in
all shapes and sizes!
As your breasts grow larger, they become able to make milk for babies after
pregnancy. Breasts can be very sensitive. When they are touched during sexual
relations, they can excite your entire body, making your nipples hard, and your
vagina wet and ready for sex.
Your breasts can also get swollen and sore just before monthly bleeding starts, or
your nipples may sometimes hurt.
Once your breasts have grown, you should start to examine them once a month
to make sure they stay healthy and do not develop any unusual lumps. Usually
a woman can find unusual breast lumps herself if she learns how to examine her
breasts. Sometimes a breast lump that does not go away can be a sign of breast
cancer. Regular health exams will help you find health problems early. See page 128
for information on how to examine your breasts.
Ducts carry the
milk to the nipple.
Sinuses store the milk
until the baby drinks it.
The nipple is where milk comes out
of the breast. Sometimes nipples
stick out. Sometimes they are flat.
The areola is the dark and
bumpy skin around the nipple.
The bumps make an oil that
keeps the nipples clean and soft.
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007