Estrogen and Women's Emotions
It's clear that estrogen is closely linked with women's emotional well-being. Depression and anxiety affect women in their estrogen-producing years more often than men or postmenopausal women. Estrogen is also linked to mood disruptions that occur only in women -- premenstrual syndrome, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and postpartum depression.
Exactly how estrogen affects emotion is much less straightforward. Is it too much estrogen? Not enough? It turns out estrogen's emotional effects are nearly as mysterious as moods themselves.
Estrogen: What's Normal? Beginning at puberty, a woman's ovaries start releasing estrogen in coordination with each monthly menstrual cycle. At mid-cycle, levels suddenly spike, triggering the release of an egg (ovulation). They then fall just as quickly. During the rest of the month, estrogen levels climb and fall gradually.
Normal estrogen levels vary widely. Large differences are typical in a woman on different days, or between two women on the same day of their cycles. The actual measured level of estrogen doesn't predict emotional disturbances. Hormones and the Brain That's not to say estrogen isn't a major player in regulating moods. Estrogen acts everywhere in the body, including the parts of the brain that control emotion.Read Full Article