Contact during social distancing: Calling is better than texting
Doing your part to curb the spread of the coronavirus, but still missing that social contact? Calling a loved one is more effective in filling that need than texting, according to Ellen de Bruijn, professor neurocognitive clinical psychology at Leiden University. Hearing the voice of a loved one releases oxytocin, texting does not, AD reports.
Oxycontin is the hormone released when a newborn baby and mother get skin-to-skin contact, when people have sex, during a hug, or while sitting side by side on the couch. "There are many positive effects when you release oxytocin," De Bruijn said to the newspaper. "Oxytocin, for example, inhibits the release of stress hormone cortisol. It is positive for blood pressure and makes you more social and less anxious, your trust in others can grow, and there are many more positive effects."
The traditional way of releasing oxytocin is through touch - hugs, kisses, sex. But with social distancing measures in place, that is often impossible. "But fortunately there are enough possibilities to keep in touch with modern technologies," De Bruijn said. "Especially hearing each other's voice can help. Research was done on girls who had to do something stressful. Afterwards they were allowed to have contact with their mother. Physical contact, contact by phone, or by texting. In that, oxytocin was released during real contact and calling, but not when sending text messages."