Minorities have a substantially increased risk of developing schizophrenia, a psychiatric disorder that is characterised by a distorted perception of reality. This dissertation supports the hypothesis that social exclusion can literally make people sick. A population study revealed that discrimination can increase the risk of psychotic episodes in homosexuals. A potential biological mechanism was also discovered: higher levels of the messenger substance dopamine were detected in the brains of a socially isolated group, in this case young people with hearing difficulties. These young people were also more susceptible to experiencing social anxiety in their daily lives. Contrary to expectations, this susceptibility to stress was not found in men of Dutch-Moroccan descent, despite this minority group being at an increased risk of developing schizophrenia.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Award date||25 Sep 2015|
|Place of Publication||Maastricht|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
- social exclusion