DocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 16831 posts, RR: 57 Posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 4057 times:
The Prefrontal Cortex is a part of the brain up in the forehead that acts as a "censoring" system. When you want something, but having it RIGHT NOW is not a good idea, the prefrontal cortex kicks in and controls your behavior. One major difference between a human brain and, say, a dog brain is that a human brain has a far larger prefrontal cortex. Most of our "thinking" seems to go on up there.
In other words, the prefrontal cortex is why a dog wants to hump something...and he goes and does it, but a man will usually (albeit briefly) reflect on the local sex laws, first.
In children, the prefrontal cortex is immature and doesn't fully mature until around age 25, although most of the maturation is done by age 15-16. This is why teenagers tend to be a bit...headstrong at times.
The psychological experiment shown here is done on children who seem to be ages 6-8. It is a simple game, a test of prefrontal cortex function. Most of the kids did quite well. So you know, they only had to wait about 3 minutes and HAD been fed normally that day.
Mirrodie From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 7421 posts, RR: 65 Reply 5, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 3988 times:
DOc, good read. Glad to see you are using your time to such an endeavour.
Quoting DocLightning (Thread starter): In children, the prefrontal cortex is immature and doesn't fully mature until around age 25, although most of the maturation is done by age 15-16. This is why teenagers tend to be a bit...headstrong at times
How true. But that 3 days not fed disclaimer was a shock for a moment.
Forum moderator 2001-2010; He's a pedantic, pontificating, pretentious bastard, a belligerent old fart, a worthless st
DocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 16831 posts, RR: 57 Reply 11, posted (3 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 3846 times:
Quoting Continental (Reply 1):
So that's why you can't rent a car at most places until you are 25...
What usually happens is that older teens and very young adults are quite good in "cold" situations. So they'd have no problem with the marshmallow test.
But in "hot" situations that are emotionally charged, older teens and young adult prefrontal cortices tend to get shut off, and so they and sometimes make decisions "in the heat of the moment" that weren't quite thought through.
This is why a 19yo, caught in the middle of a robbery, is more likely to shoot the person who discovers him than a 30yo, who will have a moment of "I can get off on breaking and entering or I can go for life in jail... better just surrender."
It also explains a lot of driving laws, like why teens are often not allowed to drive with other teens in the car. Teens get into silly games like "only pussies use the brake pedal" and with all their friends jeering and cheering, can wind up making some silly decisions that an adult wouldn't.
This is also why soldiers are drafted at 18. They don't tend to think about the death and dying bit as much as older people.
There is now evidence that there is continuing maturation and changes in the brain throughout the lifespan, which makes sense. But it seems as if decision-making capacity settles down around 25 (+/-3-4 years).
In HMO's case...well... he doesn't have a prefrontal cortex.