Lagos – Some health experts in Lagos on Friday urged Nigerians to exhibit and show more expressions of positive love to one another, saying it had health benefits.
They spoke on the celebration of Valentine’s Day that positive expressions of love could affect the physical, mental and biological well-being of people.
The Wikipedia, a free online Encyclopaedia says, “Love refers to a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that range from interpersonal affection to pleasure.
“ It can refer to an emotion of a strong attraction and personal attachment. It can also be a virtue representing human kindness, compassion and affection.”
Dr Kelechi Ahuchogu, a Psychologist, said that love had positive effects on physical, mental and reproductive health.
“Understanding the concept of love, is quite complex. Love is a genuine show of affection or concern that is devoid of ulterior or deceitful motives.
“Engaging in love-related activities may activate areas in the brain responsible for emotion, attention, motivation and memory.
“Asides from stimulating health, well-being and general productivity, love also has effect on stress reduction, thus decreasing the level of stress hormones and boosting immunity to ailments,’’ he said.
Also, Dr Maymunah Kadiri, a Consultant Psychiatrist and Founder, Pinnacle Medical Services, Lagos, said that positive love makes social relationships to be smooth.
“Love helps in our social lives. We live in a society that can make many people frustrated and disenchanted.
“So, a positive show of love can help people to cope with the stress they encounter daily.
“Love boosts and regulates social attachments. This makes relationships between couples, siblings, families, colleagues, associates, lovers and the general populace to be easier.
“These functions of love and pleasurable experiences may even stimulate personal growth and development,’’ Kadiri said.
She said that people experienced less stress when they were committed to healthy relationships.
“ Love has a positive effect on the general health. Politically, economically, environmentally, and socially, there are things that could suppress expressions of love.
“However, people experience less stress when they are committed to healthy relationships and less stress means better relationships and good health,’’ the psychiatrist said.
Another expert, Dr Obi Anyanwu, a physician, said that love was very important when it comes to the treatment or prevention of disorders like autism, cancer, depression, and other mental disorders.
“The show of love and care has a way of reducing the feelings of pain.
“ In the care of people with end stage diseases and old people, a show of love helps them to go through the process easier.
“Love makes people happy and happiness has an effect on the cardiovascular system and blood pressure level.
“Lower heart rates are associated with a good cardiovascular system too, which boosts immunity,’’ Anyanwu said.
Also, a Psychologist, Dr Etta Adenekan, said that the exhibition of positive love would make our society a better place to live in.
“We need more love in our society. It makes impact in behaviours and attitudes. At the centre of how our bodies respond to love and affection is a hormone called oxytocin.
“Most of it is made in the area of the brain called the hypothalamus and some released into our bloodstream. Oxytocin makes us feel good when we are close to loved ones.
“Couples should show more expressions of love and parents also should show same to their children.
“This will breed a generation of Nigerians that know how to show compassion, care and love,’’ Adenekan said.
Saint Valentine’s Day, also known as Valentine’s Day, the Feast of Saint Valentine or Lovers Day, is observed on every Feb. 14.
It began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian Saints named Valentinus. (NAN)