Love is a powerful emotion that captivates human attention, and that’s apparent in poetry, art, and even scientific studies, says Marla Ahlgrimm. But beyond the realm of intimacy, falling in love also has an effect on our physiological selves. The song of love triggers a symphony of hormonal changes within us. Today, Marla Ahlgrimm takes a look at how love potentially influences women’s hormones.
Oxytocin, The Love Hormone
Oxytocin is referred to as the love hormone. This little chemical plays a central role in the experience of falling in love. Marla Ahlgrimm explains that when women are in the early stages of romantic attachment, the brain releases more oxytocin than normal. This fosters feelings of trust, attachment, and bonding. Oxytocin promotes closeness and intimacy. Interestingly, oxytocin is also released in high quantities during the birth and labor process and also while breast-feeding, which is in part responsible for the strong bonds formed between mother and baby.
Dopamine And The Reward System
Oxytocin isn’t the only chemical kicked out of the brain when falling in love, says Marla Ahlgrimm. New romantic feelings also trigger a surge of dopamine in the brain’s reward system. Dopamine is released in response to feelings of pleasure, motivation, and satisfaction. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, dopamine also creates a euphoric sensation, which can lead to increased energy levels and exhilaration and boost a woman’s sense of happiness. Dopamine is also released during the anticipation of seeing a new lover after time apart.