The Relationship Between Love and Mental Health
Have you ever noticed how you feel so much better about yourself when you feel the love radiating all around you? Well, it all begins with a warm fuzzy feeling right in the pit of your tummy once you meet a perfect match on one of the dating sites you frequently browse. We’ve all been there before; the hotness we feel prickling our skin when someone declares their undying love for us is unmistakable.
Question: Did you know that love has a major effect on our mental health? That’s right, as much as we imagine love dwelling in our hearts, it doesn’t. What we feel stems from our brains. What’s more, with scientists researching the chemistry and biology of love, we now know that there are several mental health benefits of love. Understanding the effects of love will help you learn why mental health matters.
Nevertheless, to understand the correlation between love and mental health and wellness, we’ve got to look at some effects of love. Keep reading.
Maintaining excellent mental health is important for anyone to function optimally. One of the enemies of mental health is increased anxiety. Whenever you feel lonely or threatened, you stimulate anxiety, which can consequently harm your mental health. Whenever you feel threatened, you raise your adrenaline levels.
This, in turn, triggers your body to respond to stress and, ultimately, anxiety. Extended periods of anxiety and stress could have adverse effects on your mental health. However, when you’re in love or feel close to other people, there’s no space for negative emotions. As a result, you have better mental health.
Improved Mental Health with Greater Longevity
There’s no doubt that love will help you live longer. Scientists can confirm that married couples live much longer than their single counterparts. The reasons for married couples living longer are:
– Better mental health due to emotional and social support.
– Having an accountability partner pushes one to lead healthier lifestyles and keeps them away from negative habits that could deteriorate their mental health.
– There are lower cases of depression amongst married couples, which is an indicator of good mental health.
– Married couples have lower rates of drug and substance abuse. These substances can lead to poor mental health.
But, not all is lost for the singles. As long as you have close social relationships, the romantic ones can take the bench for a while. As long as you have loving friends and family by your side, your mental health will benefit from the interaction.
The first time you fall in love, the chemical dopamine responsible for the good feeling is like a ticking time bomb. It intensifies your mood, so you end up feeling more positive and wanted. Dopamine is responsible for the out-of-this-world feeling you get when you’re getting into a new relationship.
If you’re newly in love, you’re more likely to experience a little anxiety while at the same time experiencing an obsession with your love interest. This is due to the fluctuation of cortisol and serotonin. But, when the relationship blossoms, these feelings level down. However, dopamine stays active and keeps you elated. In the end, your moods are still up, and you’re as happy as you can be. A happy person is more likely to have and maintain excellent mental health.
You must prioritize your mental health during COVID. At this time, one is bound to stay away from social interaction. Human beings are social creatures, and sometimes, the lack of social interaction or display of love from the important people in your life can lead to poor mental health.
If you’re in a romantic relationship, love can help you get rid of stress. You most likely will experience the effects of oxytocin and develop warm feelings for your partner. Once you feel the attachment growing, your stress level will go down, which is excellent for your mental health.
If you aren’t near your family, friends, or significant other, boost your mental health and reduce stress by texting them or calling them on the phone. This will ensure that you keep the good feelings ignited and get rid of stress.
By now, you understand the relationship between love and mental health. The presence of feelings of love in your life will ensure that you have better mental health. On the flip side, poor mental health can affect your physical health. If you don’t take care of your mental health, you are at a higher risk of developing lowered immunity and heart attacks.
So, do you think love is a prerequisite in the search for excellent mental health? Share your comment in the section down below.
Miranda Davis is a freelance writer in the relation and psychology area. Miranda is interested in such topics as building healthy relationships between people, love/sex compatibility, and how to find the right balance in life in general. She is currently doing specific research on the topic. Miranda loves cooking and long-distance walking.