Headlines Brain Immaturity Could Explain Teen Crash Rate


Seeker of Truth
Risky Behavior Diminishes At Age 25, NIH Study Finds

Washington Post

By most physical measures, teenagers should be the world's best drivers. Their muscles are supple, their reflexes quick, their senses at a lifetime peak. Yet car crashes kill more of them than any other cause -- a problem, some researchers believe, that is rooted in the adolescent brain.

A National Institutes of Health study suggests that the region of the brain that inhibits risky behavior is not fully formed until age 25, a finding with implications for a host of policies, including the nation's driving laws.

• Growth Takes Longer Than Presumed: A study by the National Institute of Mental Health and UCLA shows that the region of the brain that inhibits risky behavior does not mature as quickly as previously thought.

• Accident Victims: The number of young people killed in traffic accidents has surged in recent weeks.

"We'd thought the highest levels of physical and brain maturity were reached by age 18, maybe earlier -- so this threw us," said Jay Giedd, a pediatric psychiatrist leading the study, which released its first results in April. That makes adolescence "a dangerous time, when it should be the best."

Brain immaturity, huh?

No Shit !