Insights into Reproductive Psychiatry: A Literature Review
This review article scrutinizes the role of male and female reproductive hormones on behavioural and psychological levels. Research suggests that estrogen serves as a protective hormone against psychosis in females, and that women are most prone to acute psychotic states during their menopausal years. Estrogen-driven dopamine levels are regulated, as shown by strong evidence that younger females are less likely to experience psychosis than older women. However, higher testosterone levels in males can cause an upsurge of dopamine levels, making younger men more prone to psychosis than older males. The role of other reproductive hormones (such as pregnenolone) on dopamine levels and therefore risk of psychosis is also explored from a psychiatric angle.