How Important Is Love to Your Mental and Physical Health?Created by:
Although no two people are alike, there is no denying that love is an important part of our lives. Even though there are those who are happy living life free of what they consider to be the encumbrances of marriage (or cohabitation), it doesn’t mean that love is something they can do without. If you are wondering just how important love is to your mental and physical health, perhaps a good place to start would be with understanding the various types of love.
7 Basic Types of Love
According to Psychology Today, there are seven different types of love, which they have based on classical literature. These include:
Eros – passion
Philia – friendship
Storge – familial
Agape – unconditional/universal love
Ludus – uncommitted love sometimes called ‘playful’
Pragma – practical by reason of duty
Pilautia – self-love, healthy and unhealthy levels
You can probably see that you have experienced each and every type of love listed above at least once in your lifetime, and even go one step further to note that you wouldn’t be the person you are today without having experienced love in some way, shape or form.
Ways in Which Love Affects Our Mental Wellbeing
What you will also notice by the list above is that each type of love has an impact at various stages of our lives to some greater or lesser degree. Doctors and scientists have found that love can promote better mental health. However, doctors also state that you cannot blame poor mental health and depression on a breakup because love and mental health share a symbiotic relationship. Was it the lack of love (breakup) that caused mental health issues or were those mental health issues the ultimate demise of a relationship?
Physiological Conditions Associated with Love
Recent studies have shown that love can decrease many of the risks associated with a great number of diseases and illnesses. According to an article on health.com, marriage has been proven to reduce the risk of diseases such as cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, and chronic ailments including diabetes. Many of those are life-threatening conditions and to say that marriage and/or long-term romantic relationships can mitigate risk factors is mind-boggling.
How Love Impacts Addiction
In one study in the year 2006, researchers found that those who binge drink and use marijuana cut back significantly after marriage. Even those who smoke are more likely to cut back or quit after making a lifelong commitment to their partners. They did find, however, that smokers were impacted to a lesser degree than those who used substances such as alcohol or drugs.
Children and Love
It is also no secret that children fail to thrive in the absence of love. It is especially pronounced in infants, but children who grow up in homes devoid of loving relationships don’t fare well in school and are also prone to failed relationships. If this isn’t indicative as to just how important love is to our mental wellbeing, little else will be.
Finding Love in Today’s Hi-Tech World
While the age of the Internet makes life easy in so many ways, it can also be a hindrance to finding that one person to share the rest of our life with. Social media may be a good place to meet, but that can be a danger as well. Anyone can create an online persona and there is no-one to prove or disprove their existence. Dating sites have become a far safer place to meet up with likeminded people for a couple of very good reasons. If you are looking to check out some safe, reliable dating sites, you might want to invest in a paid online site.
In all this, the bottom line is that everyone needs to be loved or to love in some way. Research has proven that people who love live longer, happier, and healthier lives.