[HDFS 3423] - Midterm Exam Guide - Everything you need to know! (19 pages long)

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HDFS 3423
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE
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Chapter One
Puberty: An Overview
From Latin word pubertas (adult)
Short definition of Puberty: Period of lifespan in which an individual becomes capable of sexual
reproduction
Hormones regulated by the endocrine system lead to physical changes
No new hormones are produced and no new bodily systems develop at puberty. Just a weird time in life
leveling out hormones you already have.
Puberty has three chief physical manifestations:
o Rapid acceleration of growth height and weight (growing pains)
o Development of primary sex characteristics which results in a series of hormonal changes
Sex glands
gonads
o Development of secondary sex characteristics (changes in breasts, genitals, growth, of facial and
body hair).
The actual changes
o Adrenarche before period
o Gonadarche after period
The Endocrine System
o Produces, circulates, and regulates hormone levels in the body
o Hormones
Substances secreted by endocrine glands
o Glands
Organs that stimulate particular parts of the body to respond in specific ways
o Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons
Neurons in the brain that play important roles at puberty
o Hormonal feedback loop (HPG axis)
Set point (e.g., thermostat)
o HPG Feedback Loop
Levels of sex hormones are regulated by a feedback system composed of the
hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and gonads.
Hypothalamus
Pituitary gland
Gonads
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Androgens and estrogens
What Triggers Puberty?
o Although on new hormones in adolescence, something signals the HPG axis to kick on:
Presence of mature sexual partners
Nutritional resources to support a pregnancy
Physically mature enough to begin reproducing
o Leptin may be an important signal
Protein produced by fat cells
Must accumulate enough body fat
Rising levels of Leptin signal hypothalamus to stop inhibiting puberty (at least in
females)
o Early or late to puberty?
Puberty can be delayed when there is not enough body fat
Leptin stimulates kisspeptin (brain chemical that increases at puberty), Melatonin
suppresses it.
Kisspeptin was discovered in a Hershey’s kisses lab. That’s where it gets its
name.
Leptin regulates hunger/appetite
Melatonin regulates sleep
Therefore, children who live in environments with more light (i.e. near the
equator or with excess artificial lift) and children who are obese are more likely to
enter puberty earlier than children who have less body fat or live in a darker
environment.
How Hormones Influence Adolescent Development
o Organizing Role: Change the way the brain will respond to stimuli
Prenatal hormones “program” the brain to be masculine or feminine (like setting an alarm
clock)
Patterns of behavior as a result of this organization may not appear until adolescence
(e.g., sex differences in aggression).
E.g. hormones activate and try to level out, but the activating is overriding the hormones
10-19 is about the puberty age range. Everyone’s levels are different
o Activating role: Have a direct impact on physical development or behavior
Increase in certain hormones at puberty activates physical changes (e.g., secondary sex
characteristics)
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