Parental Communication in Early Teens May Curb Health-Risk Behaviors

A new study has found that children with greater communication with their parents in early adolescence have less harmful alcohol use and emotional eating in young adulthood.

The 14-year study, published in Biological Psychiatry, followed participants from 11 to 25 years old.

According to researchers, the study found that the extent of communication between parents and children promotes the development of a brain network involved in the processing of rewards and other stimuli that, in turn, protects against the overconsumption of food, alcohol, and drugs.

“It might mean that social interactions actually influence the wiring patterns of the brain in the teenage years,” said John Krystal, M.D., editor of Biological Psychiatry. “It points to an important potential role of family interactions in brain development and the emergence of maladaptive behaviors in adulthood.”

Read more on Psych Central