Adolescence: an incomprehensible evolutionary stage

WHO defines adolescence as the period of human growth and development that occurs after childhood and before adulthood between 10 and 19 years. It is a conflict stage, especially for their parents, which is very noticeable in family relationships, because the more they need adults the more they are separated from them in a progressive way.

The adolescence It is characterized by a stage of accelerated growth and development added to various biological changes. The segregation of sex hormones in this period generates various physical and behavioral changes at this stage. The adolescent is more focused on the outside world and on the peers, since they spend more time with their peers. The adolescent, having had a greater dependence on the adult during childhood, passes to greater independence in adolescence, but still need the adult.

In fact, the more he needs the adult, the more need he has to conflict with him. It is the formula to be able to acquire the security and identity that it needs, through the adult, to be able to separate progressively. The greater the dependency on the part of the adolescent, the greater risk of separation, which they sometimes manifest through conflict and confrontation with authority figures.

The emotional storm of adolescence

In this stage there is a greater influence of the educational context and socialization. It is a stage of settlement of the socio-emotional balance, which sometimes leads to suffering an emotional storm. Conflicts often arise, and they are positive, since they help them to mature while they do not last in time, but they still require supervision, with greater distance, and reinforcement of the adult. The power of achievement appears, the promotion of expectations, objectives, goals * that will influence the consolidation of your self-esteem.

Half of adolescents sleep less than they should, either because they take advantage of the night to connect to technology, because it is their moment of solitude without they feel controlled by an adult and they go to bed late, and because it is a stage of growth where the body requires more hours of rest.

This lack of sleep leads to develop morning drowsiness, symptoms of irritability, stress and depression, can even affect the growth of the child, since at night is when growth hormone is secreted the most. To this end, parents must also encourage from childhood the acquisition of proper sleep hygiene.

Maturity in adolescence

In adolescence the brain has not yet fully matured, with the prefrontal cortex being the brain structure in development. This area is directly linked to impulsivity, where there is a greater tendency to risk exposure in adolescence.

Something similar happens with the processing of emotions, where there are cognitive functions in the process of maturation, such as attention, capacity for planning, short-term memory, the ability to concentrate ... This justifies many of the attitudes proper to adolescence such as lack of order, mood swings, lack of motivation, as well as impulsiveness.

In this stage, they need: to belong to a group, to choose their friends with freedom, to develop their self-esteem, to encourage their critical thinking, and for this to be respected by the adult, and in particular for their primary referents, as well as to make mistakes, to experience new experiences, discover the world around him ...

Mercedes Bermejo Director of Psychologists Pozuelo

Video: The Teenage Brain Explained

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