During adolescence, several changes occur to the human brain. Firstly, the amount of gray matter in the brain’s prefrontal cortex reaches its maximum, after which it begins to decrease. Second, the sensitivity of areas in the limbic system becomes much higher than in adults. It is these two interactions that are responsible for many of the behavior patterns of adolescents. Since the prefrontal cortex, which keeps a person from unnecessary risks, is in the developmental stage, adolescents often show an increased propensity to make risky decisions. Impulsive decisions also occur because many adolescents rely on emotions.
Finally, the lack of self-consciousness is due to the lack of fully formed synapses and neural connections, making it difficult to understand the decisions. Teenagers are guided by their distorted perception of the world because it is difficult for them to see other perspectives.
The reason adolescents are more prone to risky decisions is due to the changes in brain structure. This change is natural, so it cannot be said that the passion for risk manifests itself abruptly. However, the more adolescents are initially exposed to risk, the more likely they are to take new risks. With constant exposure to risk, the degree of stress in the adolescent’s body gradually decreases. Thus, a situation may arise when the signals of natural fear will cease to be perceived.
Provided that this behavior is constantly maintained, it may develop into a habit. If a teenager deliberately looks for risks through dangerous situations in the process of growing up, this will cause a developmental shift, anchoring such behaviors at the inner level. By exposing themselves to risks, adolescents derive pleasure through, for example, the release of appropriate hormones. However, taking alcohol and drugs can further increase the attachment to risks and affect the subsequent longevity of a person due to the harmful effects of substances.
The videos I learned greatly improved my understanding of brain structure and development, especially during adolescence, and explained some episodes from my own growing up. Some moments, for example, risky adventures to abandoned buildings with friends, with further development, could have an impact on my future life. However, I separated from the dangerous company in time, preventing the environment from having a negative effect on me. Nevertheless, the study of this information provides the best insight into adolescents’ behavior, which will allow understanding the younger generation better, trying to help them cope with their problems.