THE PEDIATRICIAN, in serving his adolescent patients, can profitably employ a knowledge of the individual differences which exist in the processes of sexual maturation.1 A recent editorial in The Journal of the American Medical Association emphasized this fact, concluding, "The pediatrician is in a strategic position to aid developing adolescents in understanding and evaluating their own development."2
It is certainly true that many of the psychologic tensions and inadequacies of the adolescent have a physical or physiologic basis, related to differentials which often exist in body size, sexual maturation and social or intellectual maturity.
There are widely accepted behavior expectations for children of differing degrees of physical maturity.... The body parts and characteristics and functional properties do not mature evenly.... The appearance of the adolescent, sometimes will not be in harmony with his physiological maturity; a mature appearing adolescent may have a child's tolerance for tobacco or alcohol,
REYNOLDS EL, WINES JV. INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES IN PHYSICAL CHANGES ASSOCIATED WITH ADOLESCENCE IN GIRLS. Am J Dis Child. 1948;75(3):329-350. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1948.02030020341006