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Study Finds Why Teenaged Boys Are Prone to Risky Behaviors

these streets is hard

Image credit: Redfishingboat (Mick O) via Flickr

It seems that teenaged boys are especially predisposed to risky and weird behaviors. Based on a series of 19 new studies, published in the latest edition of Developmental Neuroscience, scientists, by studying brain mechanisms, try to identify the mysterious inner workings of the juvenile male brain.

According to Pradeep Bhide of Florida State University, these new studies demonstrate the neurobiological foundation of some unordinary but widely-known behaviors shown by teenagers. The challenges of assimilation teenagers have to face are all attributed to hormonal changes, stress, complexities of psycho-social environment and peer pressure.

Being different to children and adults, if encountered with a threat, the brain area controlling emotions demonstrated increased activity in teenage males. During the experiments in which adolescent boys were informed not to react to a known threat, brain scans could still monitor a level of activity in their limbic brain, which is surprisingly different from that of adult men.

It is found from another study targeted on examination of brain chemistry that a molecule playing a fundamental role in development of fear in dangerous situations is less active in adolescent male brains. In addition, another team of scientists who had also measured brain activity identified that teenage boys were mostly immune to the threat of punishment. The same work illustrated the way in which these boys were very sensitive to the probability of large gains from gambling.

As Pradeep Bhide said in a news release, their studies were intended to isolate, examine and understand some of these potential causes of a teenager’s complex conundrum. From the research, it is clear that it would help us better understand and interact with teenagers at home or outside the home. It is also conducive to work out better educational strategies so as to treat or modify a teenager’s maladaptive behavior.

Source: Florida State University

Image: Redfishingboat (Mick O) via Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0