The brains of teenagers are still developing and don't look like those of adults until the early 20s, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. One result of this delayed neurological maturity is that teenagers tend to be reckless and engage in risky behavior. But the teenage brain can be tamed, according to new research published in the journal Developmental Science.

The researchers surveyed more than 5,000 individuals from around the world to learn about their adolescent behavior - everything from desires to their histories, according to MedicalXpress. Their findings revealed that although teens around the globe are tempted by risky behavior, not all of them react in the same way. "Culture and opportunity" can exert a taming influence, the researchers said.

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Individuals who grew up in countries where they were raised collectively by a community that limited teen autonomy -- where adults expected to have an impact on young people's choices -- were less likely to be tempted by behaviors like drinking alcohol.

Despite teens having developing brains that are more risk-prone than adults, this new research concludes teenagers are able to control the excitement of risk-taking and to resist its allure.

Although there is still a lot to be learned about the structure of the teen brain, current research suggests the changes that occur are a result of many factors including inborn traits, personal history, family, friends, community, and culture.

Other key questions that scientists seek to answer are: How does what you do and learn as a teen shape your brain over a lifetime? What unique features of the teen brain contribute to the high rates of alcohol abuse in young adults? And why, for many mental disorders do symptoms first emerge during adolescence?

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