“Inside your mind”: Is there a teenage brain after all?

10 October, 2022 News

Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, in her book Inventing Ourselves: The Secret Life of the Teenage Brain (Crete University Press 2022), presents the latest data of neuroscience research on the developmental processes occurring in adolescence.

The teenage brain is not a dysfunctional or defective adult brain. This is a creative period of life when neural pathways are still malleable. As for passion and creativity, they are particularly intense. Actually, the changes in the adolescent brain essentially provide a lens through which we can observe ourselves anew. This is a period in life when the brain is significantly modified, and we must not only understand it and take care of it but also enjoy it.

We know that the striking changes in adolescent behavior are in part regulated by hormones, but mostly reflect the restructuring of the architecture and functions of the brain: neural circuits are rearranged, new connections are created, and brain regions mature. The most important modulation occurs in the activity of the prefrontal cortex, an area associated with decision-making, impulse control, the formation of action strategies, etc.

But what about teenage experiences, such as playing video games and the use of mobile phones? How do these affect the developing brain? This is an important question, for which much has been written, especially about the potentially devastating effects that exposure to screens has on brain development. Many parents are concerned about the time their children spend in front of their phones, tablets, and computers; many are even certain that this occupation is harmful to their developing brains. Is it though?

Crete University Press invites you to the Athens Science Festival to discover the secrets of the teenage brain together with:

Fotini Stylianopoulou, neuroscientist, emeritus professor of biology in the Faculty of Nursing, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, ex-president of Pasteur Institute

Yannis Sigalas, child psychiatrist, Athenian Institute of Anthropos

Konstantinos Panagos, visiting professor of juvenile law in the Law School, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

Pelio Papadia, journalist, TALK magazine

Moderator: Eleonora Orfanidou, journalist, head of the Culture Department of Athens 984

Saturday, October 22, 2022, at 19:00

Auditorium, Technopolis City Of Athens

Organization: Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas