Simplifying Science

Cell Phone High

For parents who are looking for an upside to cell phone use among your kids, look no further.

Are Teenagers Replacing Drugs With Smartphones?

Amid an opioid epidemic, the rise of deadly synthetic drugs and the widening legalization of marijuana, a curious bright spot has emerged in the youth drug culture: American teenagers are growing less likely to try or regularly use drugs, including alcohol. With minor fits and starts, the trend has been building for a decade, with no clear understanding as to why.  Read More

The Teenage Brain, Global Edition

Throughout the world, adolescent brains develop in the same stepwise manner. This leads to a peak in risk-taking in the late teen years, well before good old rational decision making predominates (usually not until the mid-20s). So why, then, do some countries see more thrill-seeking teenagers than others?

Teenagers Do Dumb Things, but There Are Ways to Limit Recklessness

By now parents are familiar with the worrisome finding that the thrill-seeking centers of the adolescent brain can readily outmatch the teenage brain’s emerging rational control systems.I count myself among the adults who...Read More

Happy Begets Healthy

It's hard to argue with a study of 40,000 families that measures happiness among tweens and teens. Here is evidence that when these kids treat their bodies better, they engage in fewer risk behaviors. What I find most amazing about this is that healthy nutrition and exercise choices become proxies for less drinking and smoking. Yet another reason to push the fresh fruits and veggies!

A Healthy Teenager Is A Happy Teenager

Teenagers who turn their backs on a healthy lifestyle and turn to drink, cigarettes and junk food are significantly unhappier than their healthier peers. New research also shows that 12-13 is a catalyst age when young people...Read More