In this article, Network researchers consider how to leverage some of the rapid advances in developmental neuroscience in ways that can improve adolescent health. We provide a brief overview of several key areas of scientific progress relevant to these issues. We then focus on two examples of important health problems that increase sharply during adolescence: sleep problems and affective disorders. These examples illustrate how an integrative, developmental science approach provides new insights into treatment and intervention. They also highlight a cornerstone principle: how a deeper understanding of potentially modifiable factors—at key developmental inflection points along the trajectory toward clinical disorders—is beginning to inform, and may eventually transform, a broad range of innovative early intervention strategies to improve adolescent health.
This article titled “Leveraging Neuroscience to Inform Adolescent Health: The Need for an Innovative Transdisciplinary Developmental Science of Adolescence” was published in the March 2017 issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health. View the full article for free here!