Even though we have set a specific age to mark the passing to adulthood, it seems like brain development does not necessarily keeps up with the process. Across the world, in most of the countries, the age symbolizing the transition from adolescence to adulthood is 18, with slight variations depending on the societies. However, the exact definition of being an adult is still a large gap for all we know. It is easy, however, to identify an adult, in the sense of analyzing his world views, but no one has really wrote down a list of all the necessary traits of a full grown, adult human being.
Now, it seems like science has discovered a more interesting fact – Brain development is not constant and does not necessarily come with age. In other words, even if you are physically an adult, you may have a younger brain, without considering that as a disease. The brain development is still under significant debate in the scientific community, because, even though it is clear that there are certain stages in the brain development, especially during the first years of life, pass the age of 20, things become fuzzier.
In most of the cases, mental and intellectual growth can still be observed pass the age of 30 in many cases, but we have no idea what happens pass that limit, especially since not all people experience the same changes. According to scientists, brain development most likely goes on for the entire lifespan, because we always have something new to learn and assimilate. It is a process that goes on for years and its intensity varies from one man to another.
The situation is a bit volatile at this time. This is because there are legal problems to deal with in this regard. At this time, we have a legal limit beyond which a culprit can be held accountant for his actions. In most of the cases, it is 18, but, again, it may vary slightly in different countries. We think under the age of 18, a child cannot be considered legally responsible for his actions, but how exactly can we determine that objectively? The way it stands, it simply seems like a leap of faith. We just think that that is true and we have set the limit there, without any further investigation.
Now, the situation has changed, as the scientists have concluded that a person’s brain development not only that it never ceases, but it also advances at difference paces. This is why some may reach adulthood with the brain of a teenager, while others seem to be more mature, ahead of their age. It is a strange fact, which says that we really have no way of determining for sure the age at which someone becomes an adult person. Not for now, at least.