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As a teen, how do pheromones work?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Pheromones float through the air and stimulate nerves in your nose. The nerve signals are carried to your brain and trigger complicated chemical reactions that ultimately end with a question such as “Wanna hang out?” Recently, scientists have become extremely interested in this system. They suspect that the pheromone system starts with nerve cells in a pair of tiny, cigar-shaped sacs called the vomeronasal organ (VNO), where the signals are first picked up. Located just behind the nostrils in the nose’s dividing wall, the VNO is a pretty primitive structure. Nerve zero begins in the nose and ends in the brain area that deals with sexual feelings. Because this nerve is important in the sex drive of other animals, researchers have theorized that it plays a big role in our drive to have sexual or physical relationships with other people.

YOU: The Owner's Manual for Teens: A Guide to a Healthy Body and Happy Life

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YOU: The Owner's Manual for Teens: A Guide to a Healthy Body and Happy Life

A few years ago, we wrote YOU: The Owner’s Manual, which taught people about the inner workings of their bodies—and how to keep them running strong. But you know what? There’s a big difference...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.