A Hormone Can Help You Remember Happy Faces

Hormones do crazy things, they aid in one’s development and play a significant role in the things we do. But what if I told you the same hormone that is used to produce breast milk can also help you remember happy faces?

Evidence has shown that the hormone oxytocin plays a role in maternal behaviors and social bonding. A new study by Adam J. Guastella, Ph.D. and his colleagues has shown that this same hormone is also responsible for the enhancement and encoding of positive social memories. In a double-blind study, they compared Healthy males who were given either oxytocin or a placebo.The participants then were given faces showing different emotions and returned the next day to pick out the photos of those they recognized from the previous day. Participants that were administered oxytocin were more likely to remember the faces of those that were happy as compared to other emotions. Dr. Guastella reported, “findings are exciting because they show for the first time that oxytocin facilitates the encoding of positive social information over social information that is either neutral or negative.”

This study has many applications in our society, including a possibility for oxytocin to help those that are socially isolated make stronger social connections. While more research needs to be done, this study has made a breakthrough discovery that may help individuals suffering from several psychiatric disorders.



2 thoughts on “A Hormone Can Help You Remember Happy Faces”

  1. Oxytocin is such cool hormone to look at, and I had no idea that it could help people remember happy faces. After reading your blog I was curious about what else oxytocin can do and I found quite a bit of information! First of all oxytocin is released during labor, and is released to stimulate breast milk production. But oxytocin is actually released in a lot of social bonding situations like when cuddling, after sex, or while having friendly interactions with others. I think this hormone is super important to social cognition and I may look into it more in a future blog of my own.



  2. First of all can I also so how cool that is. I had no idea oxytocin had such a positive effect on the human body let alone come from breast feeding. The article I found related to your topic was written by Judith E. Glaser. She states that healthy neurotransmitters flickers within us including the bonding hormone oxytocin when we are exercising higher levels of conversational intelligence and we connect with others in non judgmental way. On the other hand when we distrust people and are not connected to them in a healthy and non judgemental way the stress hormone, cortisol is activated.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s