Your favorite cafe. Late breakfast on Sunday. You are drinking sweet flat white. Look up and – boom, you see the person who seems the best at first sight. Unreal? Your intuition is simply drawn to a mysterious stranger. Could it be love at first sight?
Love is a biological construct. Some scientists say that love at first sight is possible, especially when you consider that our brains can decide in one-tenth of a second.
What happens to the brain when you are in love
Our brain release oxytocin – often called the “love hormone” – during contact with a person and affects how strong your bond is with that person. Because everyone reacts differently, the connection in the brain can be positive (love) or negative (hate). When you meet a new person, 2 main parts of the brain are activated:
- “amygdala” (emotions)
- “posterior cingulate cortex” (autobiographical memory – responsible for decision making).
What’s more, research shows that different parts of your brain work together to release chemicals (dopamine, oxytocin, adrenaline, and vasopressin) that cause euphoria, connection, and arousal.
When you fall in love, your brain releases the chemical dopamine. So falling in love at first sight is like taking cocaine – a quick movement that benefits you and your mind becomes addicted. Since your body wants to prolong the effect of these hormones, it creates an attachment to their source.
This is why love at first sight can be possible if the brain can quickly generate the kind of long-term affection. Remember, we can decide within a split second whether we like someone or not. If the brain reacts fast enough, perhaps your feeling of “falling in love at first sight” may be real.