It is striking how teenagers can portray precision in accomplishing their duties yet reckless. Researchers have an opinion different from the general notion that the teenage brain is similar to the adult mind with only a time disparity between the two. Physicians strongly believe that the teenage mind is in great confusion of transition torn between a smart brain and lack of ideas and experience on what to do with it. Contrary to the view of many individuals who believe that the brain of teenagers is similar to the adult brain and should be entrusted with adult tasks, researchers continue to insist that this is a stage marred with a dilemma on how to apply the fast developing brain on normal life events.
Decades of research dedicated to this field has unraveled interesting facts. This research supported by its technological investment of using various advanced research technological methods such as Magnetic resonance imaging have suggested that the teenage brain is rapidly growing. However, there remains many missing links in the circuits that connect the various parts that ensure synchrony of thoughts and actions. This has been blamed for the great predisposition of influence on behavior by their environment on their actions. It is this that suggestively leads to the behavior termed impulsive in which the actions and the brain function cannot be synchronized to come up with a prudent action. This is despite the influence of hormones and familial genetic predisposition on traits and character.
Very few teenagers comprehend their mental function and mental capability, its functions and application of their thoughts. A number of psychologists, professors and doctors have continued to study this field and have come to inform adults who handle the teenagers on the various life events and punishment, reward and medical treatment of this group. This has sought to explain the vulnerability of the youth and how it can be countered. Medical research on the teenage brain has confirmed that it is constantly and frequently changing and slightly less than 80% the adult size. The cortex then develops in a retrograde fashion, from back to front such that the frontal lobe responsible for reasoning and cognitive function develops last. This does not take place fully until the age of 25 when both sexual and mental maturity is attained. There seems to be a disparity on brain development based on gender.
Boys acquire mental maturity close to two years later than girls. The communication between neurons is aggressively taking place in teenagers. Neurons constantly make new contact and this leads to development of communication between them. Repeated contact ensures stable connection. This is a double edged sword since this increases its vulnerability to external factors. For instance, it is reported that teenagers are greatly affected by the toxicity of alcohol compared to adults. This has been supported by numerous experiments in an attempt to support this argument. Scholars have continued to emphasize the importance of sleep on brain development and making of new brain synapses.
Contemporary times have meant that teenagers are held in the world of technological development which warrants multitasking with the various communication devices. This greatly hinders integration of information since it causes it to disintegrate therefore making recall difficult. Sociologists and researchers believe that new technological influence on teenage development and their actions is inevitable and can only be countered with introduction of practical interventions. Increasing awareness and guidance in strength recognition is very important in assisting teenagers manage their day to day challenges as presented to them.
Teenage adventure and their actions have amazed many parents and researchers.
Parents are still yet to understand the facts behind their actions while scientists have advanced their research methods in a bid to find answers to this intriguing stage of life. The scientist seek to establish the link between behavior and psychological development. In the past, teen actions have been wrongfully blamed on imaginary dark forces. Many theories have emerged to explain this behavior among teenagers which Aristotle claiming that ‘the young are heated by Nature as drunken men by wine’ This notion among others was held for a long time in the early 20th century pending the development of scientific ways of proving this missing link. This led to development of mechanisms of observing the human brain physical development and linking it to behavioral transformation. This provided a new basis on the focus of teenage impulsive behavior.
It also revealed many unknown facts and disputed the notion on the speed of brain development. It strongly suggested that, contrary to our belief, the brain developed very slowly. This provided a more relevant explanation and analysis of teenage unbecoming behavior. The National Institute of Health that surveyed close to a hundred individuals. Results revealed that the brain undertakes major adjustments between the age of 14 and 25. It is however important to note that during this time, the brain has already achieved 90 percent of its growth. Therefore it is only remodeling, developing and achieving new connections. The neurons that are used for this communication acquire their sheaths in an effort to improve the speed of conduction of impulses.
Meanwhile, the brain is branching and achieving new dendritic extension. This process, although complex, has greatly been broken down to explain the complex link between brain development and behavior. The process of development and maturation of the brain was widely thought to be a precise process but has proved to be a slow and complex process that proceeds gradually over time. As stated above, this process takes place in reverse, with the cortical functions represented by the cortex at the back finishing their development. This is later followed by gradual development of the frontal lobe which dictates both intellectual function, planning and more importantly reasoning which is responsible for the impulsive behavior observed among teenagers.
When the brain achieves synchrony, we achieve desirable results which dictate behavior. There is a balance between goals, ambitions and actions leading to a more accepted behavior. However, the initial stages of this development have proved to be both gradual and sluggish. It is difficult to try explaining the synchrony between mental maturity and behavior but the above research provides a basis with which this is set.
The article ‘Odyssey years’ explores the different stages of life, development and their associated behavioral trait. This article includes odyssey as a stage of life together with the stages traditional to many sociologists and scholars. This marks the little understood stage of life that lies between adolescence and adulthood. It has majorly been tagged an age of wandering characterized by rush decisions on love, career and general life events. This is a major stage of confusion to parents who only believe there is a single stage between teenage and adulthood. They are fooled into believing that their children have overstretched their teenage knowing little about the stage called odyssey. Individuals at this stage show laxity in making decisions such as marriage, picking jobs and moving out. Most of the influence on this age group has greatly been due to modern influences on development. Researchers have explored this new developing age group and stage of life which they have attributed to the fact that an increasing number of children live in closely knit structures.
Brooks, David. The Odyssey Years. 09 October 2007. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/09/opinion/09brooks.html?_r=0. 08 December 2013.
Dobbs, David. Teenage Brains. October 2011. http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/10/teenage-brains/dobbs-text. 08 December 2013.
Ruder, Debra Bradley. The Teen Brain. Septembet 2008. http://harvardmagazine.com/2008/09/the-teen-brain.html. 08 December 2013.