06.05.2021

Love is an addiction that can be treated

Pop music does not hint, but argues that love is not just a feeling, but a dangerous addiction, drugs and an unhealthy obsession. And what about scientists? It turns out that they completely agree.

A meta-analysis of studies on neurochemical elements of love, held at the University of Oxford (University of Oxford), allowed to say that love can (and should) be diagnosed as a real addiction. And one day, believe the researchers, it is the same case as Smoking or alcoholism.

Love is like a drug: two views on the issue

“Superficial similarities between interpersonal love as affection that is based on sex, and use of narcotic substances are so numerous that they are difficult to ignore – the study authors write in the journal Philosophy, Psychiatry, & Psychology. Is and agitation, and ecstasy, and his constant desire to repeat, irregular physiological responses and Intrusive patterns of thinking.” It is, according to scientists, leads to the fact that more and more researchers begin to argue that both phenomena can be based on similar or even the same psychological, chemical and neuroanatomical substrates.

However, scientists still argue about which form of romantic love is considered addiction. Although it is well known that being in love causes biochemical reactions, which are characteristic of other forms of addiction, there are at least two scientific look at the addictive nature of love. In the first case it is believed that only the most extreme, harmful forms of love can cause an unhealthy addiction. In the second case it is assumed that any form of love will be a dependence in the neurochemical sense, another thing is that in milder forms it will not be a problem.

Scientists from the first “camp” also believe that the dependence on love deprives people of opportunities to build healthy relationships and vyzyvaet negative consequences for the lover and for others. In this case, the love threatens the physical and mental health, as people trying to get rid of obsessive thoughts, making a pretty risky and does not tend to them things.

“It is a narrow view of love as a dependency, which draws attention only at the extreme and radical brain processes, attachment and behavioral symptoms that indicate addiction. But, to be fair, this is quite rare,” write the researchers of love from Oxford.

Here are scientists from the second “camp” that claim to be addicted to love “is supported by the same neurochemical processes” inherent in the people, addicted to drugs, alcohol or tobacco. From this point of view, each addiction experience is associated with the production of dopamine and serotonin – hormones that affect areas of the brain associated with learning and reward. In other words, the addict and the lover have much more in common than you might think.

Interestingly, some people have argued that the experience of love addiction may be even more powerful than a drug. But such assessments, of course, is always subjective.

When I think of the pills of love?

If we imagine that someday we will use biotechnology as a “cure” of love, the narrow and broad view of the problem of dependence here can be very useful, writes Inverse. And although now the tablets from love seem to be something like science fiction, they may well become a reality for our descendants. Though, because scientists, among others, have discovered that androgen blockers and antidepressants can be useful in terms of reducing sexual desire, which is an important part of romantic love. But that’s another story.

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