A propensity for activities in the evening rather than in the morning may offer clues to behavioral problems in early adolescence, according to psychologists who have found that kids who prefer evenings are more likely to exhibit antisocial behavior, rule-breaking, and attention problems. Results from the study further suggest that atypical secretions of the hormone cortisol and early puberty are both linked to antisocial behavior, though the findings are stronger for boys than girls.
Elizabeth J. Susman, the Jean Phillips Shibley professor of biobehavioral health at Penn State, and her colleagues are trying to understand how a characteristic titled 'morningness/eveningness', along with the ratio of cortisol readings taken in the morning and afternoon, influences young adolescent behavior. "Morningness/eveningness refers to individual differences in sleep-wake patterns and preferences for activity and alertness during mornings or evenings," Susman said. Previous studies with older adolescents show that it is linked to various psychological problems.
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