Health behaviors the teenage brain
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Health, Behaviors & The teenage brain. Mary Markowski. What are your thoughts on this?. What does it mean to be healthy? What/who impacts our health? Is health important to you? Why/why not?. Health

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Health, Behaviors & The teenage brain

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Health behaviors the teenage brain

Health, Behaviors &The teenage brain

Mary Markowski

What are your thoughts on this

What are your thoughts on this?

  • What does it mean to be healthy?

  • What/who impacts our health?

  • Is health important to you? Why/why not?

Review of key definitions

  • Health

    • "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity"

      • Who would you describe as “healthy”? Why?

  • Wellness

    • Behaviors an individual chooses that helps determine one’s health

      • Which wellness choices you have made today?

        • Physically

        • Socially

        • Emotionally

  • Review of Key Definitions

    Remember the 4 main influences on health

    Remember the 4 main influences on health?

    • Heredity

    • Environment

    • Behavior

    • Culture

    • Which do we have the most control over?



    • Choices we make EVERY DAY

    • They will bring us closer or further away from health

      • at least 51% of all deaths are a direct result of our choices in our lives

      • Bottom line: Choose healthy behaviors OR deal with the consequences.

    Behavior and choices

    Behavior and choices

    • Think of all the little and big decisions you have made within:

      • The past 24 hours

      • The past week

      • The past year

      • They all add up to

      • shape our life!

    Top 10 wellness behaviors that promote good health

    Getting 8-10 hours of sleep each night (9-13 hours for teens)‏

    Eating a healthy breakfast

    Eating a variety of healthy foods each day

    Being physically active 60 minutes per day; 6 or more days per week.

    Maintain a healthy weight

    Avoid tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs

    Abstaining from sexually activity (or use a condom)

    Managing stress in a healthy way

    Have positive relationships

    Practice safe behaviors to prevent injuries

    Top 10 Wellness Behaviorsthat promote good health

    Let s talk

    Let’s talk

    • So if this is all we need to do to be healthy, and health is important to us, why don’t we always do these 10 simple things?

    Volunteers please

    Volunteers, please?

    Health behaviors the teenage brain


    Teen brain differences

    Teen brain Differences

    • 1. Prefrontal cortex (decision making) not fully developed yet

      • Tough to make good, logical decisions for the long term

    • 2. Amygdala (seeks pleasure and avoids pain) is swollen

      • so it’s sensitive to new, exciting experiences and overreacts to negative experiences

      • Makes Addictions PEAK now!!!!!

    • 3. Brain is STILL GROWING as a whole

      • usually finishes growing by age _____

    • Bottom Line: TEENS are PHYSIOLOGICALLY impaired

    • HEALTHY DECISIONS are more difficult to make now

    Making decisions in our lives

    Making Decisions in our lives

    • SO, now that we know about the brain and how it impacts our choices/behaviors,

    • What can we do to make better choices for ourselves?

    • Focus on what we CAN control!

    Healthy decision making process

    Healthy Decision Making Process

    • Identify decision to be made

    • Think about options.

    • **Predict consequences of each option.

      • Advantages/Disadvantages or a Pro/Con list

      • Is it against the law school or family rules, or teachings of my religion?

      • Is it harmful to me or others?

      • Would it disappoint my family or other adults important to me?

      • Would I be hurt or upset if someone did this to me?

  • Choose best option.

  • Do it.

  • **Rethink your decision

    • How did things turn out? You can always decide differently and learn from experieinces!.

  • Practicing healthy decision making process

    Practicing healthy decision making process

    • You (or your partner) gets pregnant and does not know what to do.

    • • You want to drop out of school.

    • • You are really angry and hurt at your best friend and want to “tell them off”.

    • • You feel pressured into having sex with a boyfriend/girlfriend.

    Summary of what we know so far

    Summary of what we know so far

    • - Behavior is the most significant part of our health

    • We are in control of our behavior

    • We make tons of behavior decisions each day

    • Our brains are still growing and that impacts behavior/decisions

    • We can choose to think about our reaction (use the healthy decision making process)….or not

    • So let’s put this to use!

    Decision making and goal setting making it real

    Decision making and goal setting – making it real

    • .If you have made mistakes, there is always another chance for you.

    • You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we

    • call .failure. is not the falling down, but the staying down..”

    • - Mary Pickford

    • Research shows that people who use goal-setting effectively suffer less from stress, are better able to concentrate,

    • show more self-confidence, and seem to feel happier. (Baylor University, 2012)

    • Let’s each set specific goals throughout the semester and help each other achieve those goals.

    Let s play a game wants

    Let’s play a game: “wants”

    • In your journals, write “WANTS” and date it 1/31/13

    • I’m going to give you about 60 seconds to write down everything and anything you want to achieve in your life

    • Include short term and long term “wants”

    • Somet things to think about:

    • - physical health (eating and exercise)

    • - career/education goals

    • - people you admire and want to be like

    • - happiness/peace/excitement

    • - family/friend relationships

    • - romance/marriage/partnership

    • - where to live

    • - hobbies/sports

    • - ways to deal with stress

    Let s figure out how we can achieve those things we want

    Let’s figure out how we can achieve those things we want!

    • Pick your top 3

    • Pick the most important one to focus on TODAY

    S m a r t goals and behaviors

    S.m.a.r.t. Goals and behaviors

    • Specific

    • A SMART goal identifies a specific action or event that will take place.

    • Measurable

    • The description of a SMART and the outcome should be quantifiable.

    • Achievable

    • A SMART goal should be attainable given available resources.

    • Realistic

    • A SMART goal should require you to stretch some beyond your normal

    • routine and regular abilities, but allow for likely success.

    • Timely

    • A SMART goal should have a time period when it will be accomplished

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