How To Understand The Teenage Brain
Teens may think they know it all, but the truth is, the rational part of their brains does not develop fully until they’re 25! Adult brains and teen brains operate rather differently. According to Stanford Children’s Health, adults process information with their prefrontal cortex which is the rational part of the brain. Whereas, the teenage brain uses the amygdala, which is the emotional part of the brain. Understanding this may help many parents understand the way their teenagers operate and process what and how they learn.
As teenagers think with the amygdala, their decision-making skills can often be delayed. Did you know that there are significant changes in the brain during their adolescence? Check out the 5 key things to understand about the teenage brain:
What You Need To Know About The Teen Brain
The Brain Matures After It Completes Its Growth Process
The brain completes its growth process during adolescence, however, it does not finish its development! The brain continues to mature into a person’s middle to late ’20s. The prefrontal cortex, which is the front area of the brain, is one of the final parts to mature. The front region is responsible for problem-solving skills, impulse control, and planning. As this area is late to develop, teenagers are far more likely to engage in more risky behavior without thinking over the potential consequences of their actions.
Teen Brains Are Ready To Learn
According to Harvard University, the adolescent brain is better at learning from experiences and adapting from them. The teenage brain has a significant amount of plasticity which allows them to learn, adapt and change based on the environment they’re in. This is especially helpful when it comes to creative activities and challenging academics.
Mental Health Struggles May Appear During Adolescence
As the brain continues to mature and change, so do a teenager’s physical, mental and social needs. This can make them much more vulnerable to mental health struggles. In fact, 7 in 10 teens struggle with their mental health according to the National 4-H Council.
Teens Require More Sleep Than Both Children and Adults
If your teenager craves more sleep, it’s likely they actually need it! Psychology Today explains how teenagers need 8-10 hours of sleep each night to meet their performance needs each day. Melatonin levels in the blood elevate at nighttime and drop in the morning in teens. That can explain why teenagers tend to stay up later and struggle to wake up in the morning! The teenage brain needs this sleep to process information more effectively!
The Adolescent Brain Is Resilient
The teenage years are challenging and rather vulnerable for most. However, they also help most adolescents become more resilient adults. Changes in the brain during this period help protect them against more harmful, long-term mental health disorders in the future.
Help in High School
Is your teenager preparing for high school this fall? GradePower Learning’s High School Tutoring Programs help teens reach their academic performance goals and improve their confidence! Sign up before the fall to ensure an excellent academic year for your teen!