Puberty can feel like a brave new world, or even a whole new planet - and for children with disability, there can be unique issues to address. Planet Puberty is a new website launching today to help parents and carers of children with intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder navigate the changes to their bodies, emotions and social interactions occurring during adolescence.

The Planet Puberty website provides parents and carers with a range of inclusive and accessible digital resources, including factsheets, videos and useful books. These resources cover everything a child needs to know as they go through puberty, including information about body changes, hygiene, periods, emotions and relationships.

Planet Puberty is also launching a limited podcast series on 24 May, 2021. The podcast will feature special guests including former Dolly Doctor Melissa Kang and sexologist and counsellor Jodi Rodgers from the hit Netflix show 'Love on the Spectrum', as well as the voices of real parents and carers of children with disability.

Ee-Lin Chang, Senior Health Promotion Officer at Family Planning NSW says the organisation has worked alongside people with intellectual disability for more than 30 years.

"At Family Planning NSW, we respect the rights of people with disability to have control over their lives and make their own decisions about their reproductive and sexual health," Ms Chang said.

"Through Planet Puberty, we're giving parents and carers of children with intellectual disability and autism the tools to support them to live a more independent, healthy and happy life as they grow."

Planet Puberty is also producing a series of educational webinars for parents and carers of children with intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder. The webinars will feature Family Planning NSW psychologist Zoe Semmler and Associate Medical Director Dr Clare Boerma, who will help parents prepare their children for important aspects of puberty including physical and emotional changes, erections, masturbation, periods and wet dreams.

The Planet Puberty resource suite was co-designed with people with disability and their parents and carers. These perspectives were critical in guiding the development of the new website at all stages.

"Parents and carers of children with intellectual disability and autism have been telling us that they need this kind of tailored information to help them know when and how to start the conversation about puberty," said Ms Chang.

"We're pleased to be able to bridge this gap by combining our expert reproductive and sexual health information with the experience of people with disability and their families."

This project was made possible through funding from the Australian Government Department of Social Services. Visit for more information.

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