PSYC23H3 Lecture Notes - Cortisol

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11 Apr 2012
PSYC23- Feb. 02/2012
Oxytocin-what triggers the release?
When you take a nice bath, touch someone, and huge amount of release during
sexual interaction
It goes off the chart when you deal with pregnancy and birth
Oxytocin and tending
First it was related to bonding behaviour
Praire volts- long lasting relationships and montane volts- swinging relationships
How does it affect caregiving?
In praire volts- when you haven’t given birth yet and do give birth- equal
amount of time spent with the offspring
Montane volts- don’t spend time with offspring and when they give birth-
significant increase in the amount of time spend with cubs but still less than the
praire volts
Praire volts- oxytocin levels don’t shift dramatically when they were a new
babysitter or a mother
Montance volts- oxytocin levels really low but do rise when they become a
parent eventhough the behaviour is quite not high
Oxytocin during pregnancy
By last trimester, women will show significant elevation in oxytocin level
compare to earlier months
Circulating cortisol levels decrease dramatically across pregnancy
The more oxytocin you had in the 3rd trimester, the greater the parental
The women who had high level of oxytocin in the third trimester became the
mother who gave greater maternal behaviour toward the baby
In the third trimester- who had low cortisol level had greater maternal behaviour
Mutual Regulation vs. Self- Regulation
Benefit of having parents who provide support in coping with stress
Supportive parents enable to increase psychological complexity- that maybe
learned from early interactions with parents
If parents are sensitive, they facilitate outcomes- study by stopping parental
interaction and they look closely how the relationship is affected
Still-face face to face Paradigm
Parent is asked to do it
Cooing and smiling by baby to get the attention
When parent becomes normal again- social gaze increases but show some
negative effect and heart rate decreases
Early Stress: Preterm infants
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