What mental changes occur during adolescence?

The prefrontal cortex gets bigger during adolescence. This part of the brain manages decisions, emotions, and data analysis.

Dr. Janice K. Hillman, MD

Teen brains are almost adult size by puberty, but the brains do not have fully developed nerve pathways, especially in the part of the brain, called the prefrontal cortex. The prefrontal cortex is responsible for the executive functions of reasoning, insight, analysis. The prefrontal cortex does not fully mature until young adulthood. It is not just the hormones affecting their behavior!

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