As the great researcher, Harry Harlow, confirmed decades ago, contact comfort is essential for human development and a sense of security.

A mere 20-second hug with a loved one, loved pet or loved stuff animal releases the “cuddle hormone” oxytocin. Oxytocin has been shown to contribute to positive emotional responses including relaxation, trust and psychological stability.

With many of us on “stay at home” or “shelter in place” orders and following social distancing guidelines, potential risks of social isolation increase. Fear of others, feelings of insecurity and uncertainty and tension may arise. At these times, it’s important to return to the basics.

Give a genuine, heartfelt and long hug to someone or something you love; your spouse, children, pet or favorite pillow and experience the calm to follow. Contact comfort reminds us of the basic goodness of humanity and that this too shall pass…

Be well and reach out if we can be of assistance.

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drluis@orleanspsych.com
(614) 436-4457

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