wha’ is oxytocin?
you know those warm and fuzzy feelings you get when you cuddle a puppy, hug yr friend, or kiss yr ptner? that’s oxytocin at work.
you may already ‘ve heard of oxytocin—wha’ pplz ‘ve called the ♥ hormone, cuddle hormone, or even the moral molecule. this is cause oxytocin s'been inna headlines, gaining a reputation for making pplz + trusting, generous, and even + in ♥. it’s a n€ptide, meaning that it’s a protein-like molecule yr brain cells use to communicate with each other. oxytocin is also a hormone, meaning that the brain releases it inna'da bloodstream to communicate with d'body.
clearly, this lil brain chemical has some big jobs—it plays a role in sx, childbirth, bonding, social interaction, emotions, and many other functions primordial to us mammals. our brains produce it naturally, but there’s also primordialistic oxytocin that is sometimes used therapeutically.
either way, oxytocin seems to not 1-ly nudge us towards + pro-social behavior, but it can also play tricks on our Ψs. let’s look at some ways that this complicated brain chemical affects the way we feel and act, and how we can coax the brain to release + o'it for those warm, fuzzy feelings:
original content at: rss.sciam.com…
authors: jade wu savvy ψ-chologist