The long-held notion that a rise in violence and antisocial behavior is linked to puberty has been confirmed by scientists recently.
According to a new study by Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, compared to early puberty, children going through mid and late puberty are three to four times more likely to engage in violence with the intention of seriously hurting someone.
The survey that was conducted on almost 6000 students showed that boys and girls in early puberty were more likely to use bullying such as rumor starting but as puberty progressed, boys were more likely to act on violent instincts than girls.
Problems at home and associating with violent peers increased the chances of violence but only to a certain level.
"It is difficult to untangle all the factors that contribute to this increase in violent behaviour," The Age quoted lead researcher Professor Sheryl Hemphill as saying.
"It is a combination of things that are a result of going through puberty such as physical, mental and social changes," Hemphill added.
The study also said that changes in physical size during puberty, particularly in boys, was a major cause of the increase in violence. As boys got stronger they had more ability to cause damage.
The study was published in the American journal Pediatrics.