Thursday, February 17, 2005

Love bug can drive you mad

Now, you know why love is blind....Beware, ye lovers....
by Roger Dobson & Sarah Kate Templeton, The Sunday Times, Monday, Feb 14
People who feel compelled to behave irrationally on February 14 (Valentine's Day) may not entirely be to blame for their actions. Scientists have found evidence that love really is blind.
Scans of lovers' brains show that they lose their critical faculties when smitten, making them less able to spot flaws or potential problems.
The blackout could be the reason lovers are said to behave impulsively or irrationally and why incompatible couples make whirlwind marriages they later regret.
Professor Semir Zeki of University College, London, has been studying lovers' brain scans and will present a paper on the research later this year.
"The scanning shows that love activates specific regions in the reward system of the brain, while reducing activity in the systems involved in making negative judgments," he said.
"Our research shows that the brain deactivates the networks used for critical social assessment and negative emotions while it bonds individuals through the reward circuitry. This explains the power of love to motivate and exhilarate."
The scans showed that in people involved in romantic relationships, the most activated parts of the brain were those which respond to oxytocin and vasopressin, hormones involved in the forming and maintaining of relationships.
Just which neurochemical suppresses areas of the brain responsible for critical judgments is not clear, although dopamine is a suspect.
Phillip Hodson, a relationship counsellor and author of How to Make Great Love to a Woman and How Perfect Is Your Partner? warns lovers against acting impulsively during the passionate first stages of a romance.
"People should not take any major life decisions when they are in this giddy state of love. People end other perfectly good relationships, they chuck in their marriage to run off with a Gambian beachcomber."


Blogger Arattai Ambujammal said...

It is OK to be blind with love than anger or hatred. Now-a-days, it has become a trend in the scientific community to analyze emotions and assign reasons such as synaptic chemical imbalance. Rather than do such research on love and lack of judgement due to the love bug, why not indulge in research such as tracing a terrorist with a scan of the head and recognizing the very same chemical imbalances due to hate and violent thoughts? Love is a wonderful feeling.. human culture has survived the "misjudgements" of a lover but hatred (Rwanda, Sudan?) has made so many wonderful human tribes extinct!

10:38 PM  

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