Modelo de desbalance del desarrollo cerebral: nuevo enfoque teórico en la comprensión de conductas de riesgo en la adolescencia

Yunier Broche Pérez

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OBJETIVO: Describir el modelo de desbalance del desarrollo cerebral y presentar la evidencia empírica que sustenta esta hipótesis sobre el neurodesarrollo en la adolescencia.

DESARROLLO: La adolescencia representa un periodo crítico en la maduración cerebral con importantes implicaciones en las dimensiones afectivo–sociales y cognitiva. En esta etapa se aprecia un incremento en las conductas de riesgo y las dificultades en la toma de decisiones. Las teorías clásicas explican esta peculiaridad aludiendo a la inmadurez de un grupo de procesos cognitivos superiores, sin embargo, la evidencia reciente indica que las habilidades básicas de procesamiento de la información y sus substratos neurales han alcanzado su punto máximo de desarrollo en este periodo. El modelo de desbalance del desarrollo cerebral es un enfoque teórico novedoso, con base en las neurociencias, que ofrece una explicación alternativa sobre la prevalencia de conductas de riesgo y los déficits tradicionales en la toma de decisiones durante la adolescencia. El modelo plantea la existencia de un desarrollo asincrónico entre las estructuras prefrontales en relación con las áreas neurales relacionadas con los procesos socioemocionales. Particularmente, las conexiones subcorticales motivacionales y emocionales se desarrollan más temprano de lo que lo hacen las regiones relacionadas al control prefrontal. Este desequilibrio en la maduración conlleva en un aumento de la dominancia de las regiones motivacionales subcorticales en comparación con las regiones prefrontales.

CONCLUSIONES: El desbalance en la maduración de la CPF impide el desarrollo óptimo del sistema de control cognitivo (SCC), permitiendo que el sistema socioemocional (SSE) ejerza un rol rector en el control del comportamiento en esta edad.

Palabras clave

Adolescencia; Conductas de riesgo; Desarrollo cerebral; Modelo de desbalance del desarrollo cerebral; Neurociencias

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