Afterglow refers to “the look of contentment on a person’s face after great sex,” at least according to the Urban Dictionary. In other words, the basic idea here is that sex can sometimes be so good that it has lingering effects on our happiness that others can quite literally see. Despite the popularity of this colloquial term, it’s not something that scientists have studied, which begs the question of whether there is really something to the idea of sexual afterglow and, if so, how long it lasts. A new study published in the journal Psychological Science offers some insights.Read More
“Though we often associate love with the heart, the true magic can be seen inside the brain.”
This fascinating video by ASAP Science explores the neurobiology behind love. It turns out that when we’re in love, our brains activate the same pleasure centers as when we take drugs like cocaine, thereby resulting in a psychological “high.” Specifically, when we are around the person we love, our brains release a number of chemicals, including dopamine, norepinephrine, and oxytocin, which generate sexual desire and that feeling of being bonded with another person. At the same time, our brains release lower levels of serotonin. Given that low serotonin is linked to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), this could help to explain why people in love often report having obsessive thoughts about their partner.
Check out the video below to learn more about what happens to our brains when we’re in love.