Journal of Child and Adolescent Health

All submissions of the EM system will be redirected to Online Manuscript Submission System. Authors are requested to submit articles directly to Online Manuscript Submission System of respective journal.
Reach Us +1 (202) 780-3397

Short Communication - Journal of Child and Adolescent Health (2023) Volume 7, Issue 6

Navigating Adolescence with Gender-Affirming Hormones: A Journey of Self-Discovery

Jack Daniels *

Department of child & adolescent psychiatry, University of California, United States.

*Corresponding Author:
Jack Daniels
Department of child & adolescent psychiatry
University of California,
United States

Received:03-Dec-2023,Manuscript No. AAJCAH-24-122882; Editor assigned:04-Dec-2023,PreQC No. AAJCAH-24-122882(PQ); Reviewed:18-Dec-2023,QC No. AAJCAH-24-122882; Revised:22-Dec-2023, Manuscript No. AAJCAH-24-122882(R); Published:31-Dec-2023,DOI:10.35841/aajcah-7.6.181

Citation: Daniels J. Navigating adolescence with gender-affirming hormones: A journey of self-discovery. J Child Adolesc Health. 2023;7(6):181

Visit for more related articles at Journal of Child and Adolescent Health


Adolescence is a time of profound self-discovery and identity formation, marked by a myriad of physical, emotional, and psychological changes. For transgender and gender-diverse individuals, this period can be particularly challenging as they grapple with the incongruence between their assigned sex at birth and their authentic gender identity. Gender-affirming hormones (GAH) emerge as a vital component of the journey toward self-discovery during adolescence, providing a pathway for individuals to align their physical bodies with their true gender identity. The exploration of gender identity during adolescence is a deeply personal and often complex process. For transgender and gender-diverse youth, the incongruence between their affirmed gender and the characteristics associated with their assigned sex can lead to significant distress. Gender dysphoria, characterized by the discomfort or distress caused by this incongruence, underscores the importance of gender-affirming care, including hormones, to alleviate the psychological burden and foster a sense of self-acceptance [1,2].

Adolescents embarking on the path of gender-affirming hormones are often guided by healthcare professionals who specialize in transgender care. This involves a comprehensive assessment, including mental health evaluations, to ensure that individuals are well-informed and ready for the emotional and physical changes that accompany hormone therapy. The decision to pursue gender-affirming hormones is a collaborative one, involving the adolescent, their guardians, and healthcare providers working together to support the individual's unique journey [3,4].

Gender-affirming hormones typically involve the administration of testosterone for those assigned female at birth (AFAB) and estrogen for those assigned male at birth (AMAB). These hormones induce secondary sex characteristics aligned with an individual's affirmed gender, such as changes in body hair, voice pitch, and fat distribution. While the physical changes are significant, the emotional and psychological effects are equally profound. Adolescents undergoing GAH often experience a sense of congruence and alignment between their physical bodies and gender identity, fostering a positive sense of self. The emotional well-being of transgender and gender-diverse adolescents is a critical consideration in the administration of GAH. Research suggests that gender-affirming care, including hormone therapy, contributes to improved mental health outcomes, reducing the risk of depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation. By addressing the incongruence between gender identity and physical characteristics, GAH can serve as a powerful tool in promoting resilience and self-acceptance among adolescents navigating the complexities of identity [5,6].

Moreover, the impact of gender-affirming hormones extends beyond the individual, influencing social relationships and overall societal understanding of gender diversity. As adolescents undergo these transformative experiences, families, friends, and communities play a pivotal role in providing support and understanding. Open communication, education, and acceptance contribute to a more inclusive environment, fostering a sense of belonging for transgender and gender-diverse youth [7,8].

Navigating adolescence is an intricate journey, and for transgender and gender-diverse individuals, the path toward self-discovery is often accompanied by the exploration of gender-affirming hormones. The decision to pursue GAH during this critical period reflects a commitment to authenticity and self-acceptance. As society continues to evolve in its understanding of gender diversity, the importance of affirming care, including hormones, becomes increasingly evident in promoting the mental health and well-being of adolescents [9,10].


Gender-affirming hormones serve not only as a means to align physical characteristics with affirmed gender but also as a catalyst for positive emotional and psychological growth. As we embrace the diversity of gender experiences, it is essential to foster supportive environments that allow adolescents to explore and express their authentic selves. Through education, empathy, and open dialogue, we can collectively contribute to a world where every adolescent, regardless of gender identity, can embark on their journey of self-discovery with confidence and resilience.



  1. Chlebowski RT. Estrogen plus progestin and breast cancer incidence and mortality in the women’s health initiative observational study. J Natl Cancer Inst 2013;105(8):526–35.
  2. Deutsch MB. Effects of cross-sex hormone treatment on transgender women and men. Obstet Gynecol 2015;125(3):605–10.
  3. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  4. Nadeem O. Prevalence of venous thromboembolism in patients with secondary polycythemia. Clin Appl Thromb Hemost 2013;19(4):363–6.
  5. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  6. Bachman E. Testosterone induces erythrocytosis via increased erythropoietin and suppressed hepcidin: evidence for a new erythropoietin/hemoglobin set point. J Gerontol Ser A Biomed SciMed Sci 2013;69(6):725–35.
  7. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  8. Nguyen HB. Gender-Affirming hormone use in transgender individuals: impact on behavioral health and cognition. Curr Psychiatry Rep 2018;20(12):110.
  9. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  10. Ahmad S, Leinung M. The response of the menstrual cycle to initiation of hormonal therapy in transgender men. Transgend Health 2017;2(1):176–9.
  11. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  12. Surampudi P. An update on male hypogonadism therapy. Expert Opin Pharmacother 2014;15 (9):1247–64.
  13. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  14. Costa LBF. Recommendations for the use of testosterone in male transgender. Rev Bras Ginecol Obstet 2018;40(5):275–80.
  15. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  16. Wilson DM. Pharmacokinetics,safety, and patient acceptability of subcutaneous versus intramusculartestosterone injection for gender-affirming therapy: a pilot study. Am J Health Syst Pharm 2018;75(6):351–8.
  17. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  18. Shoskes JJ. Pharmacology of testosterone replacement therapy preparations. Transl Androl Urology 2016;5(6):834–43.
  19. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

Get the App