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Love sickness is a non-medical term used to describe mental and physical symptoms associated with falling in love.
Historically, love sickness has been viewed as a short-lived mental illness brought on by the intense changes associated with love. Universally acknowledged polymath Avicenna, a Persian, viewed obsession as the principal symptom and cause of love sickness. This diagnosis has been out of favor since the humoral model was abandoned, and since the advent of modern scientific psychiatry.
A 2005 article by Frank Tallis suggested love sickness be taken more seriously by professionals.
Some of the symptom clusters shared with love sickness include:
More substantively, the estimated serotonin levels of people falling in love were observed to drop to levels found in patients with OCD. Brain scan investigations of individuals who professed to be "truly, madly, deeply" in love showed activity in several structures in common with in the neuroanatomy of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), for example the anterior cingulate cortex and caudate nucleus.
Love sickness can cause suicidal thoughts if it is too extreme. Evident in two young teenagers from Nottingham, Samuel Ward and Ellen Bannerman, who decided upon a mutual suicide pact because of their new found emotions with love.