Oxytocin as Treatment for Mental Illness?

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Oxytocin, a hormone found in all humans and many animals, is known for its roles in sex and infant-mother bonding. A recent article by Fox News evaluates the hormone’s role in treating mental illness. Oxytocin produces several effects in the healthy human body, including promoting maternal milk-flow and uterine contractions during labor. It also promotes bonding between sex partners when it is released during orgasm.

A synthetic oxytocin has been used during labor for decades. Oxytocin is also being used in clinical trials to objectively test its efficacy against a number of mental illnesses, the article relates. Post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, social anxiety disorder, autism, alcohol abuse, borderline personality disorder and depression are all listed as disorders in which current or past oxytocin clinical trials have been conducted.

Oxytocin is difficult to administer and nasal spray has become the primary method of administration. It has also proven difficult to quantify the results on mental illness as many of the effects have been subtle or difficult to objectively measure. Nonetheless, oxytocin remains an intriguing area for future psychological research.

It is best not to attempt to use oxytocin without physician approval and monitoring. Oxytocin found via the internet is not FDA approved and may contain incorrect dosages or harmful ingredients.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2010/12/06/love-hormone-oxytocin-cure-ills/

 
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