POOR IMPULSE CONTROL MAY BE PRE-WIRED IN SOME TEENS

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Brain-4-30-12.jpgBy: Join Together Staff

Poor impulse control may be pre-wired in some teenagers, suggests a new study. Researchers have identified brain networks that are linked to impulse control and drug addiction, which may exist even before someone is exposed to alcohol or drugs.

Researchers at the University of Vermont performed a brain imaging study that included almost 1,900 14-year-olds, ABC News reports. They used a functional MRI, which permitted them to see how different parts of the brain work together. The teens were asked to perform repetitive tasks, and then were asked to stop mid-task, while the researchers measured their ability to do so. People who abuse drugs or alcohol tend to perform poorly on this test, the news report notes.

The study identified teens who had previously been exposed to alcohol, illicit drugs or nicotine, and could recognize specific brain patterns linked with early experimentation with these substances. Teens who had poor impulse control, but did not have a history of substance abuse, had similar brain images to those teens who already had used these substances.

Continue Reading: drugfree.org

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