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How Hugs and Physical Affection Affects Stress Levels

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Get a hug, give a hug, squeeze, snuggle, cuddle, smush, hold hands or curl up. Or simply say the "L" word. With the amount of time we spend on our phones and in front of our computers, it’s way too easy to forget about human contact. Which can do a number on stress. So grab a friend, a hubby, a sweetie pie, or your puppy fluffy and get cozy. It’s going to make you both feel better. 


It's science

  • When you hug someone, oxytocin (also known as the "cuddle hormone") is released. Oxytocin is associated with higher levels of happiness and lower levels of stress.
  • When giving another person support through touch it can impact the part of the brain associated with stress. Not only that, it can even reduce the stress of the person doing the comforting.
  • An affectionate relationship may be good for heart health. Reductions in blood pressure levels and heart rate have been associated with simple emotional and physical affections, such as hand holding and hugs.

Where should you start? 

Can’t hug in real life? (#socialdistancing!) Try sending a ghost hug, or facetime a family member and remind them that you love them. In the absence of physical touch, simply acknowledging your feelings and connecting on an emotional level can do the trick too! It truly is the thought that counts. ❤️️❤️️❤️️


Extra credit

Ask them for a hug again tomorrow. And the next day. 

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