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Mature Brain Boosts Self-Control

Maturity is something that most people associate with age, and it turns out that this isn’t far from the truth. Maturity levels increase as people grow older because of the fact that it takes a while for the brain to build its information highways in a more efficient manner, thereby helping a person to make better decisions and control their impulses more effectively as they age.

Maturity Helps Boost Self-Control

A study published in Current Biology revealed that the ability to control impulses, make good decisions, and stay on task all increased over time. The study consisted of roughly 900 subjects from the ages of eight to 22. The results of the study show that abilities such as running or seeing are well developed by the time a person is eight years old, but that the ability to inhibit inappropriate responses doesn’t develop well until they are in their 20’s.

The development of such self-control is known as executive function. One of the goals of the study was to determine how the brain changes as executive function develops. Researchers used diffusion imaging to observe the fibers making up the information highways of the brain. They discovered two things:

  1. Information highways in the brain cluster into modules that perform specialized functions, such as impulse control.

  2. The connections between those modules become stronger.

These two changes allow information to flow more efficiently throughout the brain’s network. The more efficiently the brain is able to process information, the stronger a person’s executive function will become.

While this study revealed enlightening information about how the brain functions and develops, the study itself was not without its limitations. Although there was a large study group, the observations of these subjects were not made over time. New studies that will explore the maturation of the brain and the development of executive function plan to rectify these limitations.

The ability to identify the development of executive control could also allow medical professionals to identify individuals at risk of developing psychiatric or substance abuse disorders in the future. For more health-related news, visit us at The Benefits Store today.


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