Keiki Talk: Teenage brain development

Do you have a teen at home? In today’s Keiki Talk, Dr. Allana Coffee talks about the teenager’s brain development.


She says the mass and the function of the brain change, which is good news. “The prefrontal cortex controls decision making planning, judgment, social inhibition, self-awareness, and empathy. It is still developing. The mass, weight or grey matter in the prefrontal cortex peaks in early adolescents, then sheds in later adolescence, indicating a honing and strengthening of synaptic connections,” explains Dr. Coffee.


She says it affects the limbic system which influences risk taking and rewards; it’s hyper-sensitive at this time. “Managed well, adolescence is the perfect time to take advantage of creativity, and adventurousness. These are things that are present in childhood and not typically in adulthood.”

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