Today, the American College of Pediatricians (ACPEds) announced the publication of its evidence-based Position Statement entitled “The Teenage Brain: Under Construction” with research showing that adolescents’ brains are under construction during these formative years, and this should inform parents’ role to protect the best interests of their children.
The evidence-based research on brain development shows that the adolescent brain is under construction and can be adversely affected by high-risk behaviors and by the negative environmental influences the brain experiences. The judgment center is immature, leading to poor decision-making. High-risk behaviors and permanent medical decisions such as abortion and gender-transition surgeries that are encountered during these vulnerable years can have lasting adverse consequences. The importance of parental supervision, sound coaching, and assistance in decision-making cannot be overstated.
Dr. Jane Anderson, MD, MCP, board member of the ACPeds and retired faculty in Pediatrics at University of California San Francisco released the following statement:
“High-risk, addictive behaviors such as drug use, gambling, video gaming, pornography, sexual experiences and permanent medical decisions such as abortion and gender-transition surgeries can have lasting adverse consequences on the teenager. Parents can positively impact the brain development of adolescents as they assist in sound decision-making, provide structure to the adolescent’s environment, and monitor the adolescent’s activities.