8 Ways Love Changes a Man's Brain

"High" on Love

Dr. Jake Porter, LPC, a licensed professional counselor, tells Bustle that "the brain produces a very high level of a chemical called phenylethylamine (PEA)" during the start of a relationship, making falling in love so addicting.

Impaired Judgment

Notice how a love interest is perfect? PEA speaking. Porter argues it adds to a favorable bias and nature's "mating sequence"—the desire to stay with this "perfect" person and have a child.

Creating Good Memories

In early love, the brain creates sweet memories and associations. Schiff credits the "love hormone" chemical oxytocin.

He’ll Feel Euphoric.

Brain activity makes men in love happier. Schiff argues that when a guy falls in love, large quantities of dopamine—a neurotransmitter connected with the brain's reward center.


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Men May Love Faster Than Women

Gender roles may explain why guys fall in love faster. Schiff believes men may feel like they have to take a leadership position in a relationship, so they enter into partnerships soon to settle down.

Love Reduces Pain.

Dr. Jarred Younger, Ph.D., a neuroscientist and associate professor at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, has done brain scans on men and women in love and found that love decreases pain by half.

Love May Help Men Quit Smoking

Younger observed that a new love connection may modify a man's brain chemistry, making it easier to quit smoking. If a guy quits smoking after dating you, he may be in love.

Others Disappear

Oxytocin boosts the brain's reward system when men stare at their partners' faces. Feel-good chemicals will make them think their mate is the most gorgeous and desired.