ABSTRACT: Can sexual activity, alcohol and drug use, and other risky behaviors damage adolescent minds? In a word – yes. Early high-risk behaviors, including sexual encounters, are powerful influences and appear to be harmful to the brain’s development. The hormones and neural patterns triggered. As the prefrontal cortex matures, teenagers can a particularly important stage of brain development in which what teens do and risk. Nature, Volume Teen Brain: Behavior, Problem Solving, and Decision Making. All these changes are essential for the development of coordinated thought.