Decision making in adolescents: a multifaceted construct


  • Rubens José Loureiro Laboratório de Escrita Cientifica, Escola de Ciências da Escola Superior de Saúde da Santa Casa de Vitória (EMESCAM) – Vitória (ES), Brazil



Nervous system, Decision, Adolescent


Judging to make a decision amidst several possibilities that   rise to risks, losses, gains and uncertainties is not a simple matter. In this process, the subject needs to verify the situation considering the alternatives that are made up of several elements, among them, the analysis of how much this decision will cost and what benefit it will have in response, and what the consequences will be in the long, medium and short term. In this sense, decision-making is associated with the deliberative and affective process that relates to multiple variables that are interconnected with the flow of information assimilated by the agent who is responsible for the judgment and the decision. This process is interdependent on the subject's structure with external stimuli. Thus, the individual's forces and social pressure are important elements to be considered for decision making. For the adolescent, this issue becomes even more important, as it is a phase of human development in which the person exhibits behaviors of risk and during this stage of life there is a process of maturation of the central nervous system, which are related to decision-making and motivational processes. Therefore, decision making among adolescents is a complex issue that in addition to biological factors are directly related to social and psychological elements, depends on a maturity in development, but can be impaired if stressful situations are constant stimuli in the lives of adolescents.


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