Nipples are a part of the human body, found on the upper chest. Most people have two nipples (although some people have three or more!). Boys’ and girls’ nipples look similar but men’s and women’s nipples look different. So, what happens as boys and girls grow up that makes their nipples and other parts of their bodies change shape?
Human beings are a type of animal called a mammal. Mammals are warm-blooded, which means that they can keep their bodies at a steady temperature, no matter how hot or cold the weather is around them. They have fur or hair on their bodies to help stay warm in the cold, and they sweat or pant to cool themselves down when it’s hot. Female mammals also have a special skill that other animals don’t – they can feed milk to their babies.
Mummy mammals make milk using special body parts called ‘mammary glands’, which we often call by other names. For example, a cow’s mammary glands are called udders and a dog’s or cat’s mammary glands are called dugs. Human mammary glands are known as breasts (but we call them ‘boobies’ in our house) and the milk they produce comes out through small openings in the nipples.
When a girl grows up into a woman, several parts of her body change in shape and size. This is because chemicals called ‘hormones’ move around in her blood, getting her body ready in case she becomes a mummy one day. This process of change is known as puberty. As a girl goes through puberty, her breasts grow, her nipples get bigger, and she develops hair on her vulva and under her arms.
So in human girls, nipples grow into boobies through a process called puberty, which is controlled by hormones inside the body.
And did you know that puberty doesn’t just happen in girls? Boys go through it too, but their bodies change in a different way. As a boy goes through puberty, he starts to grow hair on his face, chest and under his arms, his voice gets deeper, and his penis and scrotum get bigger. These body changes help to get his body ready in case he becomes a daddy one day.
If you want to read more about girls’ bodies and boys’ bodies, why not check out my earlier post: what you got?