How puzzling it is that adolescents, children between 10 and 20 years of age, are generally at their top physical health and yet their brain lags behind in its development, needing considerable time to catch up.
A publication of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIH Publication No.. 11-4929), explains this and more and deals nicely with the teen brain as one that is “still under construction.”
In fact, new technologies have better enabled Medical Health Scientists to investigate the connections between an adolescent’s brain function, its’ development, and teen behavior. It’s quite clear now, that in significant ways, an adolescent’s brain does not mature and resemble an adult brain until the early 20’s. We can now better understand why so many of us as parents are telling our teen to “grow up.”
While the article won’t change the frustration that you may feel from time to time in dealing with your teen’s immature brain, it may help you better understand that you are not alone.
There are instances where a teens behavior and choices require more support, especially when their choices may be causing harm to their brain development. There are ways to help “rewire” the brain and/or to give them the support that they need through more difficult times.