Animal Studies of Attachment: Lorenz and Harlow

Lorenz, animal studies of attachment: Lorenz’s research investigates the Evolutionary Explanation of attachment suggesting that infants are pre-programmed to form an attachment from the second that they are born. The findings from Lorenz’s research (as outlined below) offers support for the idea that infants have an attachment gene and that they imprint on a caregiver not long after birth.

Stages of Attachment identified by Schaffer.

Even though the time after birth is a very special, important time for parents to bond with their new baby, the overall process of the formation of attachments takes longer in human infants, and it is around 7 to 8 months before babies how their real first attachments. Schaffer and Emerson identified that infants go through a number of stages of attachment.

Reciprocity and Interactional Synchrony

Attachment is a two-way, enduring, emotional tie between two people (usually and infant and their primary caregiver). An attachment is usually shown in the behaviour between two people. An attachment between an infant and primary caregiver is usually reciprocal (responding to the action of another with a similar action). This attachment (tie) usually develops in set stages within a fairly set timescale.

Biological Therapies (drugs) for Treating OCD.

How they work: Anti-depressants work by raising levels of Serotonin in the brain (as low levels of Serotonin have been linked with an increased likelihood of OCD). In “normal” brains, Serotonin is constantly being released from the nerve endings, stimulating the adjacent neurons. However, sometimes the mechanism fails and the Serotonin is reabsorbed into the nerve ending before it can stimulate the neighbouring neuron. Prozac works by reducing the rate of re-absorption meaning that Serotonin levels don’t drop and the patient’s mood can remain constant (they are less likely to suffer from obsessive thoughts and compulsions). Prozac is usually taken over the course of weeks, months or even years and as well as being successful in treating obsessive compulsive disorder.