The teen age brain

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For girls, the brain reaches its largest physical size around 11 years old and for boys, the brain reaches its largest physical size around age Of course, this difference in age does not mean either boys or girls are smarter than one another! For both boys and girls, although your brain may be as large as it will ever be, your brain doesn't finish developing and maturing until your mid- to lates.

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It felt as if he turned into an angst-filled teenager overnight. So she decided to use her skills as a neuroscientist to explore what was happening under the hood. That was about 10 years ago, when society at large was only beginning to catch up to the idea that the teen brain was not a fully developed adult brain, just with less mileage.

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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. This is the emotional part.

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Your teenage daughter gets top marks in school, captains the debate team, and volunteers at a shelter for homeless people. But while driving the family car, she text-messages her best friend and rear-ends another vehicle. How can teens be so clever, accomplished, and responsible—and reckless at the same time? Jensen, a professor of neurology.

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Many parents do not understand why their teenagers occasionally behave in an impulsive, irrational, or dangerous way. At times, it seems like teens don't think things through or fully consider the consequences of their actions. Adolescents differ from adults in the way they behave, solve problems, and make decisions.

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But the brain still needs a lot of remodelling before it can function as an adult brain. Some brain changes happen before puberty, and some continue long after. Brain change depends on age, experience and hormonal changes in puberty.

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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. This is the emotional part.

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Jensen and Amy Ellis Nutt. Your purchase helps support NPR programming. Demystifies the teen brain by presenting new findings, dispelling widespread myths and providing practical advice for negotiating this difficult and dynamic life stage for both adults and teens. Frances Jensen, who wrote The Teenage Brain, explains.

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In adults, various parts of the brain work together to evaluate choices, make decisions and act accordingly in each situation. The teenage brain doesn't appear to work like this. For comparison's sake, think of the teenage brain as an entertainment center that hasn't been fully hooked up.

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As an eminent neurobiologist and single mother of two teenaged boys, Dr. Frances Jensen had a front-row seat to the seemingly contradictory behavior that would allow her sons to ace a test at school yet still make lapses in judgment no sensible adult would. The contradictions Jensen observed occur in part because our brains do not fully mature until we are in our mid- to lates, when the frontal lobe, which controls decision-making and risk-taking, develops. Teenagers do have frontal lobes, which are the seat of our executive, adult-like functioning like impulse control, judgment and empathy.

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