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How Can I Help My Son Feel Better About Not Having Facial Hair?

My son is 14, and still hasn’t really started to develop any facial hair yet. I know he feels very self-conscious about it, since all of his friends have it. Is this normal? And what do I say to make him feel better?
Jackson

Puberty brings about so many changes, it's easy for kids to feel insecure about it. Acne, mood changes, growth spurts, and hormonal changes — it's all part of growing up and everyone goes through it, but not always at the same pace. Ideally, as a parent, you've already started talking to your son about the changes teens go through as they grow.

On average, boys begin going through puberty a little later than girls, usually around age 11 or 12. But different kids develop at different rates — starting anywhere between ages 9 and 14 is normal, so it's natural for your son to feel behind the curve.

If he continues to have questions or concerns about puberty and development that you can't answer, a visit to his doctor may help reassure him.

Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: February 2010

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