Benefits of hugs
According to the research, a hug may make an individual feel happy by reducing feelings of loneliness and the harmful physical effects of stress. Hugs can change negative moods by helping the body and brain and boosting these feel-good hormones.
- Dopamine: It is the pleasure hormone that makes an individual feel good.
- Serotonin: It is the antidepressant hormone that elevates mood, controls anxiety, and reduces feelings of loneliness.
- Oxytocin: It is the love hormone that relieves stress and boosts heart health. It also helps in losing weight, lowers blood pressure, fights diseases, increases libido, reduces stress, and gives us a feeling of comfort.
- A 10-second hug helps the body fight infections, eases depression, and lessens tiredness.
- A 20-second hug reduces the harmful effects of stress, relieves blood pressure, and ensures a healthy heart.
- Increasing the hug ratio results in reduced blood pressure, decreased cortisol, improved healing, reduced cravings, and better immunity.
- Hugging a newborn child (kangaroo mother care) increases the baby's weight and improves its overall development.
Research shows that a proper deep hug may give an individual the following benefits:
- It builds trust and a sense of safety. This helps with open and honest communication.
- Because hugs can instantly boost oxytocin levels, it helps in healing some negative feelings such as loneliness, isolation, and anger.
- Hugs strengthen the immune system. Gentle pressure on the sternum and emotional charge stimulates the thymus gland, which regulates and balances the body's production of white blood cells, which keep an individual healthy and disease-free.
- Hugging boosts self-esteem. Physical contact during a hug not only makes us safe and loved but also boosts self-esteem. All the hugs we received from our parents, lover, and friends make us more self-confident and happier. They connect us to our ability to self-love.
- Hugging relaxes the muscles by releasing tension in the body.
- Hugs can take away pain and aches by increasing circulation into the soft tissues.
- A hug lowers blood pressure. When you hug, touch, or sit close to someone you love, your body releases oxytocin, which scientists call the “cuddle hormone.” This hormone can help relax and lower anxiety, which in turn can effectively lower blood pressure.
- It boosts heart health. One study found that a hug showed greater reductions in blood pressure levels and heart rate. Findings indicate that hugs can be good for heart health.
- According to a study, touch and hugs reduced the worry of mortality. It makes us feel safe. The study revealed that hugging alleviates the existential fear of a person.
- A hug makes us more mindful and aware of the current situation. Being present in the moment brings us happiness. Hugging is similar to meditation (which also makes us more mindful and aware).
- An abundance of research has shown that skin-to-skin contact such as a hug between a mother and newborn yields important physical and psychological benefits for the child, including:
There are two main operating systems we run on a day-to-day basis (parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems). Our sympathetic nervous system gets activated when we are stressed or perceive some kind of threat in our environment. Therefore, if we want to balance our mind and body, we must rely on our parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest, recovery, and digestion. Hugs activate parts of the brain that control the nerve of the parasympathetic system (vagus). When this system is operating, we can restore energy, repair our bodies, and shift into a more balanced state. Combine the working of the parasympathetic nervous system with elevated feelings of love, compassion, and gratitude, together with the oxytocin and serotonin release in your brain during a hug, and it’s no surprise that a good hug leaves us feeling happy, relaxed, and content with the world.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top How Do Hugs Make You Feel? Related Articles
Insomnia SlideshowWhat is insomnia? Insomnia by definition is trouble falling or staying asleep. Insomnia causes are varied. Learn 10 tips on how to get a good night's sleep and avoid sleep disorders such as insomnia.
20 Tips to Beat InsomniaGood sleep hygiene leads to better sleep. Avoid insomnia and sleep better by minimizing stress, exercising, and taking proper naps. Learn the health benefits of good sleep. Discover how pets, allergies, electronics, and other distractions can rob you of a good night's sleep.
Common Medical Abbreviations & Terms
Doctors, pharmacists, and other health-care professionals use abbreviations, acronyms, and other terminology for instructions and information in regard to a patient's health condition, prescription drugs they are to take, or medical procedures that have been ordered. There is no approved this list of common medical abbreviations, acronyms, and terminology used by doctors and other health- care professionals. You can use this list of medical abbreviations and acronyms written by our doctors the next time you can't understand what is on your prescription package, blood test results, or medical procedure orders. Examples include:
- ANED: Alive no evidence of disease. The patient arrived in the ER alive with no evidence of disease.
- ARF: Acute renal (kidney) failure
- cap: Capsule.
- CPAP: Continuous positive airway pressure. A treatment for sleep apnea.
- DJD: Degenerative joint disease. Another term for osteoarthritis.
- DM: Diabetes mellitus. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes
- HA: Headache
- IBD: Inflammatory bowel disease. A name for two disorders of the gastrointestinal (BI) tract, Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
- JT: Joint
- N/V: Nausea or vomiting.
- p.o.: By mouth. From the Latin terminology per os.
- q.i.d.: Four times daily. As in taking a medicine four times daily.
- RA: Rheumatoid arthritis
- SOB: Shortness of breath.
- T: Temperature. Temperature is recorded as part of the physical examination. It is one of the "vital signs."
How Can I Fall Asleep in 2 Minutes?Adequate quantity and quality of sleep are important for you to stay healthy, both mentally and physically. While for a blessed few dozing off is an easy affair, going to sleep can be a struggle for many. Falling asleep in a short while, such as in 2 minutes, may be achieved by following certain tips and sleep rituals.
How Do You Fall Asleep in 5 Minutes?Good sleep hygiene means practicing habits that help you get good quality sleep every night. Adequate sleep is essential for your overall mental and physical health. There are no quick fixes to fall asleep within five minutes, but there are strategies to help you fall asleep faster.
How to Fall Asleep FastIf you cannot fall asleep within 20-30 minutes of getting into bed or stay wide awake even after being extremely tired, then here are some tips.
Top Reasons Your Child Can't Sleep, Including YouFrom snoring and nightmares to sleep apnea and even you, see the bad habits that are keeping your child up all night.
Sleep DisordersA number of vital tasks carried out during sleep help maintain good health and enable people to function at their best. Sleep needs vary from individual to individual and change throughout your life. The National Institutes of Health recommend about 7-9 hours of sleep each night for older, school-aged children, teens, and most average adults; 10-12 for preschool-aged children; and 16-18 hours for newborns. There are two stages of sleep: 1) REM sleep (rapid-eye movement), and 2) NREM sleep (non-rapid-eye movement).
Insomnia Treatment (Sleep Aids and Stimulants)Insomnia is difficulty in falling or staying asleep, the absence of restful sleep, or poor quality of sleep. Insomnia is a symptom and not a disease. The most common causes of insomnia are medications, psychological conditions, environmental changes, and stressful events. Treatments may include non-drug treatments, over-the-counter medicines, and/or prescription medications.
Sleep ApneaSleep apnea is defined as a reduction or cessation of breathing during sleep. The three types of sleep apnea are central apnea, obstructive apnea (OSA), and a mixture of central and obstructive apnea. Central sleep apnea is caused by a failure of the brain to activate the muscles of breathing during sleep. OSA is caused by the collapse of the airway during sleep. OSA is diagnosed and evaluated through patient history, physical examination and polysomnography. There are many complications related to obstructive sleep apnea. Treatments are surgical and non-surgical.
Sleep Disorders: Insomnia, Sleep Apnea, and MoreLearn about the different types of sleep/wake disorders such as insomnia, narcolepsy, and sleep apnea. Explore the symptoms, causes, tests and treatments of sleep disorders.
Sleep QuizTake our Sleeping Quiz to learn which sleep disorders, causes, and symptoms rule the night. Trouble falling or staying asleep? Find out which medical treatments fight sleep deprivation, apnea, insomnia, and more!
Sleep Related Breathing DisordersSleep-related breathing disorders are characterized by disruptions of normal breathing patterns that only occur during sleep. Snoring and sleep apnea are the most common sleep-related breathing disorders.