We've all heard that saying about feeling butterflies in your stomach, which usually refers to the nerves and excitement that come with having a crush . But what happens when you suddenly feel butterflies in... well, other parts of your body? You probably caught a glimpse of your crush or were catching up on your fave romance novel when intense feelings and tingles began to run through your body. If this is the case, you may be feeling horny, which is a common occurrence once you hit puberty.

    This may be a whole new concept for you, and these sexual desires can be exciting and intimidating at first. When the mental and physical cravings for makeout sessions (among other things) start to happen, you may not know where to go from there. Just know that you're not alone — this is a totally normal feeling that most people experience when they hit puberty. Your close friends are probably going through it, too. Ahead, we've broken down what it means to be horny and how to tell if you're feeling it.

    What does being horny mean?

    Planned Parenthood defines the slang term as "wanting to have sex or being sexually aroused or excited." There are tons of different things that play into feeling horny, whether it's fantasizing about your celeb crush or having your period. It's not just steamy scenes on your favorite shows — your hormones play a role in your horniness, too. A 2013 study in Hormones and Behavior found that changing levels of estrogen and progesterone affect sex drive.

    Of course, there are other ways to tell if you're actually feeling horny and we've outlined them below.

    1. You keep having fantasies

    If you've found yourself daydreaming of situations where you're making out with a fictional character from that one Netflix show you can't stop binge-watching or even taking things to the next level with a friend, odds are you're feeling horny. When you're going through puberty, your brain is still developing — including the orbitofrontal complex , which processes the images and feelings that come with your newfound sexual desire.

    2. You can't sleep

    Yep, it's true. If you're having trouble sleeping, it may be an underlying sign that you're horny. Now, that's something they don't typically mention in sex ed. According to WebMD , releasing the sexual tension — be it through masturbation or sex with your partner — actually helps release prolactin, a hormone that makes you feel sleepy.

    "[Masturbation has] been linked to helping people fall asleep, so if you're suffering from insomnia, you might want to try it out," Dr. Jennifer Lincoln, the Medical Advisor for The Body Agency , told Seventeen. She also notedthat solo sex is worth a shot to relieve yourself of stress and sexual tension.

    3. You feel sensations in your genitals

    When you're sexually aroused, it's natural for your body to respond. People with vaginas may feel a tingly sensation and it may feel wetter than usual. According to the National Health Service of England , blood flows to the vaginal walls and perks them up in dilation when you're horny, which is why you may feel these sensations. On the other hand, those with a penis typically feel it harden when they are sexually aroused.

    Sam is the editorial assistant at Seventeen, covering pop culture, celebrity news, health, and beauty. When she isn't draping her cheeks in blush, you can probably find her live-tweeting awards shows or making SwiftToks.  

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    Source: www.seventeen.com

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