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The Adolescent Brain.

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Presentation on theme: "The Adolescent Brain."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Adolescent Brain

2 Frontline: Inside the Teenage Brain

3 The Brain Weighs about 3 pounds
“The most complicated mass of matter in the known universe.” Contains over 10 billion neurons and another 100 billion support cells. Eventually forms over 100 trillion connections. Brain controls ALL activity Constantly changing and adapting Neurons are capable of re- routing circuits

4 Terminology Neurons: Axon: Dendrite: Synapse:
Specialized cells that transmit information to other nerve cells or muscles. Axon: An electricity conducting fiber that carries information away from the cell body. Dendrite: Receives messages from other neurons Synapse: Contact point where one neuron “communicates” with another neuron. Source: Sullivan, 2006

5 Source: University of Utah, 2006

6 Brain Development 2 stages: Growth spurts are seen at younger ages
Growth spurts or overproduction of neurons Pruning Growth spurts are seen at younger ages Pruning happens during adolescence “Use it or lose it”

7 BRAIN STRUCTURES Frontal Lobe Parietal Lobe Temporal Lobe
Occipital Lobe Cerebellum Corpus Callosum Brain Stem Source: University of Utah, 2006

8 Source: University of Utah, 2006

9 Frontal Lobe Responsible for:
Personality, judgment, reasoning, problem solving, rational decision making, Logic and understanding of consequences Governs impulsivity, aggression, Organizing thoughts, planning for the future Undergoes significant changes during adolescence Not fully developed until mid-20’s.

10 Prefrontal Cortex Part of the frontal lobe:
Helps with impulse control, judgments, reasoning One of the last areas of the brain to develop fully. During this time, there is an increased need for: Structure, mentoring, and guidance from adults

11 Temporal Lobes Control hearing, understanding speech, sorting new information and short-term memory Contains: Amygdala and hippocampus Matures around years of age.

12 The Teenage Brain Underdevelopment of frontal cortex leads to:
More “gut” reactions than reasoning More likely to use amygadala (emotions) than prefrontal cortex (reasoning) for information processing. It takes experience to train the brain.

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