Oxytocin has usually been described as a “love molecule” as a result of it’s been related to social bonding. While you have a look at your lovely baby or pet, oxytocin might be sending indicators in your mind and physique to coordinate that “awwww” response.
However it does plenty of different issues, apart from. Oxytocin coordinates the uterine contractions which are concerned in giving delivery, and it does that so successfully that when obstetricians wish to begin or pace up labor, they hook you up to an IV bag of it. It additionally has roles to play with different physique components, together with the kidneys, coronary heart, and testes.
Even after we’re contemplating how the hormone makes us really feel socially, it’s not all love and cuddles. In some experiments, it causes individuals to be extra suspicious of these we see as completely different from us. It might additionally make us pay extra consideration to each optimistic and damaging social cues, growing emotions of concern in some circumstances. Not likely what you’ll anticipate from a “love hormone.”