Thursday, May 8, 2008

PBS FRONTLINE - Inside The Teenage Brain

the new york times julie salmon

"You could get insight into your sullen teenager's view of life by re-reading 'The Catcher in the Rye.' Or you could pop her head inside an M.R.I. machine. Either way, what you learn won't stop her mood swings, but it might make you feel better about them -- or not. ...

This FRONTLINE report ... [connects] snarly teenage forgetfulness and wariness to a growth spurt in the brain similar to the rapid changes of earliest childhood. So now when your 14-year-old acts like a reckless idiot, you'll understand that his prefrontal cortex hasn't adjusted to the onslaught of new cells.

The program's images of unruly teenage brains galloping out of control may instigate apprehension. Is 'Catcher' about to morph into 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'? Will a lobotomy stop that teenage boy from belching at the breakfast table?

Don't worry. This deadpan Frontline report is aimed at soothing wounded parents reeling from the transformation of their sweet pups into sour curs. Just as they've been telling you, the poor dears can't help themselves. ..."

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