Adolescence, a time of movements in the brain Adolescence, a time of movements in the brain

The brain of adolescent people possesses a great capacity to change and adapt. Its functioning during this life stage is key for many of their behaviors.  

Although the first years of life are decisive for the development of the brain, it is much what also occurs during adolescence, when the brain “suffers an extensive remodeling, similar to the updating of an informatics network cabling”.

The sentence above is from a group of scientists consulted by the National Geographic, and resumes what happens during this stage of life and that the UNICEF validates in its report: The adolescence, a time of opportunities. This analysis explains that during the early adolescence (10 to 14 years of age), the brain experiences a sudden electrical and physiological development. “The number of brain cells can almost duplicate in the lapse of one year, while the neuronal nets radically reorganize, with the consequent repercussions on emotional, physical and mental capacities”.

In this digital world that constantly progresses, the adolescent brain is well prepared, report researches from the United States National Institute of Mental Health, to adapt to new technologies.

Another evidence highlighted is that adolescent individuals need to sleep more hours than children and adults. “The science shows that the levels of melatonin (this is, the levels of the sleep hormone) in the blood, naturally rise later at night and decrease later in the morning, compared to most children and adults. This can explain why many teen-agers remain awake until late at night and have difficulties to wake up in the morning”.  

Related article: Forming healthy habits in teens