Stay on the level this Valentine’s
The neurochemical reactions that occur when people fall in love are both complex and beautiful. At the heart of most social/sexual bonding is the hormone oxytocin, also known as the “love hormone”. Oxytocin works in tandem with many other neurochemicals that make it possible for us to engage in social interactions.
As the nickname “love hormone” implies, prescription oxytocin has shown many benefits in those with sexual dysfunction; however, it also has applications in a variety of other conditions!
Here are five facts you may not have known about oxytocin:
- Sometimes called the “cuddle hormone,” oxytocin is released when people snuggle or bond socially, which can in turn strengthen the emotional connection people feel with each other.
- Oxytocin is also released during childbirth, where it aids in labor by causing uterine contractions, and lactation, when it prompts the mother’s body to let down milk in response to her infant’s suckling.
- It has physical and psychological effects, including the facilitation of pro-social behavior like “eye contact and social cognition”.
- It has shown to reduce stress responses and anxiety. Specifically, oxytocin is released during extremely stressful experiences, “possibly serving as hormonal ‘insurance’ against overwhelming stress”.
- In conjunction with behavioral therapy, oxytocin may benefit people with an autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) by improving the way they perceive social situations.
Oxytocin doses come in a variety of forms (like lozenges, drops, and nasal sprays) to suit a person’s needs. If you’d like to know more about oxytocin or our other sexual health therapies, connect with one of our pharmacists or talk with a physician about your options.