Relational Affection Predicts Hormonal Responses to Stressors
Kory Floyd, Student, School of Psychology
This study tested the prediction that affectionate communication predicts elevations in the release of oxytocin in response to stressors. One hundred participants completed questionnaire and diary measures about affection in their personal relationships prior to participating in a laboratory session that included a series of standardized stressors. Both state and trait affectionate communication predicted increases in oxytocin during exposure to stressors, an effect that was not moderated by sex. The results demonstrate the stress-buffering effect of affectionate interaction.