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time of life from onset of puberty to full adulthood. The exact period of adolescence, which varies from person to person, falls approximately between the ages 12 and 20 and encompasses both physiological and psychological changes. Physiological changes lead to sexual maturity and usually occur during the first several years of the period. This process of physical changes is known as puberty, and it generally takes place in girls between the ages of 8 and 14, and boys between the ages of 9 and 16. In puberty, the pituitary gland increases its production of gonadotropins, which in turn stimulate the production of predominantly estrogen in girls, and predominantly testosterone in boys. Estrogen and testosterone are responsible for breast development, hair growth on the face and body, and deepening voice. These physical changes signal a range of psychological changes, which manifest themselves throughout adolescence, varying significantly from person to person and from one culture to another. Psychological changes generally include questioning of identity and achievement of an appropriate sex role; movement toward personal independence; and social changes in which, for a time, the most important factor is peer group relations. Adolescence in Western societies tends to be a period of rebellion against adult authority figures, often parents or school officials, in the search for personal identity. Many psychologists regard adolescence as a byproduct of social pressures specific to given societies, not as a unique period of biological turmoil. In fact, the classification of a period of life as "adolescence" is a relatively recent development in many Western societies, one that is not recognized as a distinct phase of life in many other cultures.


See T. Hine, The Rise and Fall of the American Teenager (1999).


the stage in the LIFE COURSE between childhood and adulthood marked by the beginnings of adult sexuality but coming before full adult status or final detachment from the FAMILY OF ORIGIN OR ORIENTATION.

In simple societies the passage from childhood to adulthood is often marked by rites de passage (see RITUAL), or by the provision of young mens (and less often young women's) AGE SETS. However, it is within modern societies, with their distinctive emphasis on YOUTH CULTURE, fostered by the MASS MEDIA OF COMMUNICATION, that adolescence has achieved a particular importance. In these societies, in contrast to more TRADITIONAL SOCIETIES, adolescents must choose their CAREERS and sexual partners as well as their general LIFESTYLE. Thus adolescence, the time of educational examinations and entry into work, is also a stage in the life cycle which is associated with individual experimentation in sexual and leisure behaviour. It may also be a time for questioning received values, and of rebellion against parental patterns of behaviour (see also GENERATION). The search for independence, and the heightened sense of self-awareness and uncertainty about SELF, can also lead to psychological crisis and psychological disturbance. See also YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT, DELINQUENCY.


Stage in the cycle of erosion following youth and preceding maturity.
The period of life from puberty to maturity.


novel of young love. [Am. Lit.: Booth Tarkington Seventeen in Magill I, 882]
References in periodicals archive ?
It will enable adolescents to have access to and use of information as well as enhanced confidence and avenues to form and express their opinions.
Suicide and accidental death from self-harm were the third cause of adolescent mortality in 2015, resulting in an estimated 67 000 deaths.
But in many cases, adolescents who suffer from mental health disorders, substance use, or poor nutrition cannot obtain critical prevention and care services either because the services do not exist, or because they do not know about them.
A purposive sample of 600 adolescent students (boys=300; girls=300) with age range between 13 to18 years was taken.
12,13] A performance evaluation in urban Mumbai by Joshi BN et al (2006) on Adolescent Friendly Health Centre (AFHC) has also shown that parental involvement can improve health seeking behaviour among adolesscents.
As the adolescent develops what Piaget (Robbins, Chatterjee, & Canda, 2012) calls Formal Operations, the adolescent's ability for abstract reasoning increases.
Punjab Minister for Education and Youth Affairs, Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan officially launched the Punjab Adolescent Strategy & Strategic Plan 2013-17.
Addressing to participants of the launching ceremony, Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan said the adolescents of ages between nine to nineteen years are significant part of Pakistan's population.
and they filled out questionnaires measuring demographic information, parent religiosity, adolescent religiosity, risk behaviors, and emotional health.
The authors suggest that fathers distancing from their adolescent (because of their anxiety about the upcoming separation) may be a factor in poor adolescent glycemic control.
A number of factors have been identified in association with parent adolescent relationship.
In the present study parent-adolescent conflicts are examined to establish whether or not they can be attributed to the extent to which parents involve the adolescent in family decision making or the construction of rules, employ reason and explanation in an effort to accommodate the adolescent's increased capacity for abstract cognition, and grant autonomy or allow the adolescent jurisdiction over the personal domain.

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