Hugs! We all have those days when we just want to crawl into the arms of someone who smells nice, feels warm and radiates positivity especially when that inflammation kicks in or our hormones are flying around.
We’re not sure hugging was listed in sex education lessons (if you were lucky enough to get any at school!) but science has shown that perhaps it should be. While it’s true that you still need an egg and some sperm to meet the natural way or with the helping hand of artificial insemination, a little bit of hugging can go a long way!
Battling daily with your reproductive health can be frustrating, depressing, terrifying and emotional especially as a lot of your reproductive journey feels like it’s out of your hands, but hugging is a safe, non-controversial and totally free daily prescription.
As today celebrated National Hugging Day, originally created in 1986 by Rev. Kevin Zaborney, it is celebrated each year on January 21st, we thought we’d bring you a little information about the benefits of hugging and how you can utilise it on your reproductive journey.
Most of us can probably remember those hugs which just leave us feeling wholesome, protected and at peace. The kind you just dissolve into and breathe in as it washes over you. Hugging is comforting and science tells us that hugging falls within the realms of psychosomatic medicine. Touch has been found to have a “beneficial influence” over a variety of bodily systems which are sensitive to stress including your immune system.
Hugging can trigger a release of oxytocin from the brain enabling us to bond with our partner, family member or friends. The release of oxytocin causes an increase in feelings of commitment and intimacy.
Hugging relaxes the muscles and helps to release tension in the body.
Hugging releases endorphins which help to relieve pain by blocking pain pathways and increase circulation to soft tissue areas such as the pelvis!
Passionate hugs encourage the exchange of emotions across bioenergetics fields. This is generated by the heart increase our ability to empathise with others. This helps to build trust. If you’re feeling low and are finding it difficult to open up about things try hugging the person you want to open up to sometimes actions speak louder than words.
Lift Your Mood
Hugging has been shown to increase the production of dopamine in the brain. Low levels of dopamine are traditionally found in those struggling with depression. Increases in dopamine levels help to lift our mood so on those low days get hugging!
Hugging can help to increase the production of serotonin in the brain which boost self-esteem and improves mood. When serotonin levels are low you can experience symptoms of depression and loneliness, hugging causes the brain to release serotonin and endorphins creating a sense of pleasure.
Don’t Be Nervous!
Hugging helps to balance out the nervous system. Your skin contains an intricate network of tiny- egg shaped pressure sensors. These are called panician corpuscles which connect with the brain through the Vagus nerve. These allow us to sense touch
Stress is definitely something we all struggle with throughout our reproductive journey whether we are battling endo or pcos, fibroids or cysts it can be stressful. Research from Emory University uncovered an amazing link between touch and stress release among adults. A hug can help to alleviate stress by reducing levels of cortisol in the blood. This enable your mind to settle and calm.
Hugs help to decrease your heart rate. A study conducted by the University of North Carolina showed that participants who did not have any physical contact with their partner had an increased heart rate compared to those who were able to regularly hug their partners during the experiment. An increased heart rate can lead to high blood pressure and heart related illness so get hugging to keep your heart healthy!
Hugging can help to improve mood, lower risk of disease and infection and make you feel glowing all round! Get hugging! You can thank us later!
The Science of emotions: Dr. Fahad Basheer
PsychoSom Med 70:976-985 (2008) Influence of ‘Warm Touch’
The physiological benefits of hugging: Josh Richardson
Image Credit: Cosmopolitan Magazine
Let us know who you’re looking forward to sharing a hug with!