Benefits of hugging

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Whether we are just greeting a friend hello or we are wrapped up in the arms of our partners, hugs always makes us feel warm and fuzzy inside. But even beyond this feeling of being protected and loved, hugging as a touching gesture can really do wonderful things for our wellbeing. So whether it is a cute cuddle, a simple squeeze or a big bear hug- there are several reasons as to why the act of embracing someone benefits both who does and who embraces the act in an equal way.

Some of the most common benefits of hugging are:

Hugging makes ourselves feel good

The simple act of embracing someone isn’t just an act which we feel on our arms. It has been clinically proved that when we hug someone, we release oxytocin (also known as “cuddling hormone’), which being released makes us feel fuzzy and warm. The chemical oxytocin is a neuropeptide which has also been linked with social bonding activities like devotion and trust.

Decreases blood pressure levels

The hormones those that are released after hugging are not just meant for happy feelings. It has been medically proved that hugging, or per say when we touch someone, the sensation of touch on our skin activates the pressure receptors call ‘Pacinian corpuscles’ on body, which send signals through the ‘Vagus nerve’ to certain areas inside our brain that is responsible for lowering our blood pressure levels. Hence hugging can also help our physical health in a great way.

Alleviate fear and increase self-esteem

It has been recently published in a study on fear and self-esteem in the journal ‘Psychological Science’ that hugging significantly reduces our worries of mortality. It has been told in the said study that even if it is just an inanimate object like a teddy bear, touching and hugging such things helps in soothing our existential fears effectively.

Decrease feeling of loneliness

According to a certain research done in Ohio State University, it has been found that physical touching and especially hugging becomes extremely important with age. It has also been noted in this research that as we get older and more fragile physically, contact such as embracing more than once in a day becomes increasing important for our good health. Apart from that as loneliness is something that accompanies with age, which in turn increases stress, hugging someone makes a person feel instantly closer and so decreases the feeling of loneliness through this act.

Hugging increases immunity

It has been clinically proved that hugging increases and boosts our immune system. The emotional charge that is created by embracing which puts gentle pressure on our sternum, according to the Indian Kundalini theory, activates the ‘Solar Plexus Chakra’ that stimulates the thymus glands which in turn balances the body’s production of white blood cells that increases immunity.

It has been wisely said by some noble mind that- while we need four hugs per day for our survival, we need eight hugs more every day for our maintenance and thereafter twelve more hugs for our growth.

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