Scientists used to believe that your brain stopped physically evolving in early childhood but new research has shown that keeps changing well into middle age.
Brain scans have shown that the prefrontal cortex – the area just behind your forehead – continues to change shape in your 30s and 40s.
The discovery is particularly significant as the prefrontal cortex is a key area of the brain and is often thought said to be key to what makes us human.
It is said to be involved with decision making, social interaction, and many other personality traits. Professor Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, a neuroscientist at University College London, revealed the new thinking at the British Neuroscience Christmas symposium in London.
She said: "Until about 10 years ago we pretty much assumed that the human brain stopped developing in early childhood.
"But we now understand from brain imaging that is far from the truth and that many human brains keep on developing for many decades.
"The area of the brain that goes through the most protracted development is the prefrontal cortex right at the front of the brain.
"It is the part of the brain that is involved in high cognitive function such as decision making, planning, and social behavior. It is also to do with understanding other people.
"It starts developing in early childhood, is reorganized in late adolescence, and continues developing well into the 30s and 40s.
"It is the part of the brain that makes us human."