Leaning why gentle touch is so important to good health.
Most of us realize the importance of touch when raising our children: it feeds their basic needs of acceptance, comfort, and love. We stroke our children’s hair, snuggle with them, rock them to sleep, hug them, play with them and so on. What about adults? Within our daily lives, often times, we ourselves do not even consider touch as important, or we know it is, but never express it to our spouses, friends, etc. But doctors and psychologists have both stressed the importance of gentle touch in all of us to feed our basic needs. The same is true as children, adults need to feel appreciated, relieve tension, escape from all the noise, conflicts and daily challenges associated with being an adult.
As reported by the NY Times:
“In a series of experiments led by Matthew Hertenstein, a psychologist at DePauw University in Indiana, volunteers tried to communicate a list of emotions by touching a blindfolded stranger. The participants were able to communicate eight distinct emotions, from gratitude to disgust to love, some with about 70 percent accuracy.
“We used to think that touch only served to intensify communicated emotions,” Dr. Hertenstein said. Now it turns out to be “a much more differentiated signaling system than we had imagined.”
This need of gentle touch is one reason regular massage is so important. It stimulates the nerves and encourages production of our “feel good” chemicals in our bodies which promote happier and healthier lifestyles and wellness.
Not only massage though, but in everything from parenting, relationships, to sports, and work. Gentle touch is such an important aspect of our daily lives.
“If a high five or an equivalent can in fact enhance performance, on the field or in the office, that may be because it reduces stress. A warm touch seems to set off the release of oxytocin, a hormone that helps create a sensation of trust, and to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol.”
So, with massage and its many benefits, shouldn’t be seen as necessarily pampering from time to time, but with studies showing the benefits massage can bring us, it just makes sense to make massage part of our wellness routines: just like eating right and exercising.
Don’t just take our word for it, do your own research and you’ll find DAYS upon DAYS of reading research regarding massage and it’s importance to personal wellness and health.
Just food for thought.
Have a wonderful day everyone and make the best of each day!