Concept of Parenting

Tip 48: Adolescents uneven brain development, part 2

1. Adolescents are those between the ages of 10 and 19. The brain is not fully developed but developing unevenly. The 2 main brain developments are Sensation impulses and Decision making impulses. During initial adolescent years, Sensation develops much faster than decision making.
2. The sensation seeking, that is impulsiveness, develops early in Adolescents and it rewards social queues and peers. The more they see their peers the better they feel. Therefore the company your child keeps is important because early adolescence is a period of increased susceptibility to peer.
3. Having friends who engage in risky behaviors increases an individual’s likelihood of engaging in these behaviors. Affiliating with deviant peers is one of the strongest predictors for adolescents engaging in substance use. What about having friends who fear God? Let them engage in church activities so that they can become more kind.
4. The Steinberg’s gas pedal is the social-emotional system that states that: about the time of the onset of puberty, changes in brain structure and function, hormones, and neurotransmitters work together to increase the desire to seek out rewarding experiences, especially the sensation afforded by novel and risky behavior from peers. The effect of brain function is also conditioned by the social environment. Various lab experiments, including video driving games and gambling games, show that adolescents take more risks if peers are present or evaluating their performance.
5. The peak of sensational impulsive development is at 16, when they become more uncontrollable and easily influenced by peers. So take note of that age.
6. By the time they get into 20s, decision making impulses develop. They now have more controls on the sensations. With the presence of peers, they can control their decisions.

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