Issues In Lifespan Development

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Running head: Issues: Adolescents Current Issues in Life-Span Development: Adolescents and Risk Taking Behavior Paper Jessica Duplantis University of Phoenix Abstract Researchers have studied the brain to determine the factors leading to adolescents and risk taking behaviors. Studies have determined that the limbic system structures and the pre-frontal cortex of the brains in adolescents are not fully developed. These brain structures are linked to pleasure seeking activities and judgment and since these parts of the brain are not fully developed in adolescent they exhibit higher levels of risk taking behavior. Adults must supervise adolescents and provide more guidance to enable adolescents to make better judgments in order to provide a better path into adulthood. Current Issues in Life-Span Development: Adolescents and Risk Taking Behavior Over the past few years researchers have studied the brains of adolescents and are finding a great deal of insight into why adolescents exhibit risk taking behaviors. The adolescent stage of life-span development is critical for exhibiting the right behaviors in adulthood. The limbic system of the brain which is linked to pleasure seeking activities plays a major role in adolescent risk taking behavior. Recent studies of the brain, particularly the prefrontal cortex are revealing that these structures of the brain are not fully developed in adolescents, leaving adolescents at greater risk for making poor choices. Becoming an adolescent also means new peer influence, more independence, and having more opportunities. All these activities come at the same time the brain of adolescents are still developing. While adolescents are given more responsibilities they may not be capable of making the proper judgment in many situations. According to one study conducted to discover if brain activity during the
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