As such, the prefrontal cortex is a little immature in teenagers as compared to adults; it may not fully develop until your mid-20s [source: Kotulak]. And if you don't have a remote control to call the shots in the brain, using the other brain structures can become more difficult.
But these researchers have discovered changes in the structure of the brain that appear relatively late in child development. Changes in the Prefrontal Cortex. ... of the teen and to get through ...
In fact, recent research has found that adult and teen brains work differently. Adults think with the prefrontal cortex, the brain’s rational part. This is the part of the brain that responds to situations with good judgment and an awareness of long-term consequences. Teens process information with the amygdala.
The Prefrontal Cortex and Teen Brain Development. The brain develops in a back-to-front pattern. Hence, prefrontal cortex development is the last part of the brain maturation process. As a result, teen brain development is not yet complete. Lack of frontal lobe maturity catalyzes a variety of teen behaviors.
"The brakes come online somewhat later than the accelerator of the brain," said Johnson, referring to the development of the prefrontal cortex and the limbic system respectively.
Their actions are guided more by the emotional and reactive amygdala and less by the thoughtful, logical frontal cortex. Research has also shown that exposure to drugs and alcohol during the teen years can change or delay these developments. Based on the stage of their brain development, adolescents are more likely to: act on impulse
Studies have shown that teenagers are more likely to become addicted to alcohol and drugs [source: Hotz]. In that developing prefrontal cortex, synapses are selected based on whether they're used or not, so behaviors that shape the brain are more likely to be maintained if started at this age.
When research comparing prefrontal cortices of adults and teens first came out in the 1990s, his colleagues interpreted it to mean “we need to keep them on a short leash, because they aren’t ...
The prefrontal cortex takes in information from all of the senses and orchestrates thoughts and actions to achieve specific goals. 1, 2. The prefrontal cortex is one of the last regions of the brain to reach maturation. This delay may help to explain why some adolescents act the way they do.
Furthermore, although contemporary discussions of adolescent maturity and the brain often use a deficit-based approach, there is enormous opportunity for brain science to illuminate the great strengths and potentialities of the adolescent brain. So, too, can this information inform policies that promote adolescent health and well-being.