In today's hectic world, it can be challenging to find time to unwind. Most people forfeit their time for intimacy to work for extended periods, which is not good for their well-being. Be it with your loved one, your favorite pet, or a comfy pillow, cuddling is a rewarding way to de-stress and experience intimacy.
Cuddling is more than just enclosing your arms around your loved one and holding tight. Cuddling is a unique love language. Some people prefer to cuddle and cling onto their better half whenever possible, while others reserve cuddling for the bedroom as a warm-up for the main show.
And forget about the assumption that men aren't natural cuddlers. In fact, they crave cuddling more than women. Hugging, snuggling, massage, and kissing are all forms of cuddling. Stick around to discover the health benefits of cuddling.
Surprising Health Benefits of Cuddling
Intimacy is not all about intercourse. Sometimes, having quality time with your better half where you cuddle one another is enough to give you the desired happiness. Here are some of the health benefits linked with cuddling:
- Promoting Maternal Behavior
When humans make contact, be it cuddling, kissing, hugging, or holding hands, the body responds chemically. Oxytocin is among the hormones your body releases and is specifically known to cause maternal behavior. This means it aids in driving feelings of security, trust, and bonding.
This hormone is often linked with pregnancy and labor because it brings about a nurturing feeling in women. In addition, oxytocin is associated with affection in multiple ways. Studies show that oxytocin levels are higher in people who are dating than those who are not.
- Lowering Blood Pressure
Touch has a soothing effect that may help to lower blood pressure in your body. Short cycles of holding hands and hugging have been shown in studies to reduce diastolic and systolic blood pressure. Since high blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke, it would help to include regular cuddling in any high blood pressure treatment regimen.
- Create more sexual satisfaction
Cuddling usually results in physical intimacy, but it's equally important to cuddle after making love. Studies show that partners who cuddle after making out have higher sex and relationship satisfaction.
- Increasing Happiness
Dopamine is another chemical that increases in your body whenever you cuddle, snuggle, or hug. Dopamine, also called the "feel good," can make you feel like you're on a natural high. Besides, dopamine plays an essential role in controlling happiness and ranks high among the most integral neurotransmitters involved in mood.
- Reducing Depression
Cuddling is also said to increase serotonin, another "happy" brain chemical. Just like dopamine, researchers generally view serotonin as among the most crucial neurotransmitters influencing people's moods. When your brain releases serotonin, it promotes optimism, happiness, and satisfaction.
According to doctors, most depression cases are triggered by a reduction in serotonin, which is why most modern antidepressants function by improving the amount of serotonin available to brain cells.
- Lowers Inflammation
Besides relieving pain, cuddling helps to lower inflammation because it increases the secretion of T-regulatory cells, which fight inflammation cells.
- Reduces Social Anxiety
Good hormones encourage positive thoughts. And the same holds for a good touch as it has positive vibes engraved on it. When you hug your significant other or get a warm handshake, your nerves automatically relax, lowering your anxiety. Try cuddling with your partner regularly to boost your self-confidence while lessening your social anxiety.
- Helps Relieve Pain
The reasoning behind this is simple! When your neck feels pain, and you rub it, you automatically get a calming effect. Think of how a similar mechanism works when you have a body to body contact with your partner!
- Cuddling Lowers Risk of Heart Disease
With the secretion of oxytocin, your body naturally gets a calming effect, which in turn, reduces your blood pressure, further eliminating your risk of heart disease.
- Cuddling Boosts Immunity
When you're mentally delighted, it manifests physically as well. So when cuddling and your body produces oxytocin, you feel positive about yourself. To add to that, more hormones are released to fight off different infections.
- Better Sleep
Cuddling automatically calms your mind and improves your sleep quality by releasing oxytocin.
- Cuddling Deepens Your Relationship
Communication is critical in any relationship, not only about words but also touch. Actions, as they say, are more powerful than words. Even a basic touch can do wonders, and cuddling is a sign of deep communication. Returning to your house after a busy day at work and thinking of it every time can negatively impact your relationship.
However, if you arrive home and commit some 15 to 20 minutes to cuddle and unwind with your loved one, it will deepen your relationship as a couple. This reassures you that you will always be available for one another, whatever the situation.
- Losing Weight
In most cases, binge eating occurs because of hormonal imbalances in that you feel hungry but you just eat for contentedness. With the release of oxytocin, your body relaxes naturally, and your hormones are in sync, so they don't tempt you to eat for pleasure.
Tip: With many health benefits linked with cuddling, ensure you commit time to cuddle with your lover. After all, love is supposed to be felt more than said.
Cuddling Benefits for Children
Children's brains require a lot of sensory stimulation as they grow and develop. Cuddling plays a critical role in his case and helps set the groundwork for the following aspects within the first 90 days of being born.
- Coping abilities.
- A strong digestive and circulatory system.
- Healthy relationships.
- Healthy sleep patterns.
- Lowering anxiety and stress.
- Minimizing discomfort from emotional stress, congestion, and teething.
- Improved muscle tone.
- Improved immune functions.
- Encouraging calmness and relaxation.
After birth, children struggle to adapt to the new environment as opposed to the dark womb they originated from. Cuddling simulates the womb environment by instilling feelings of security and warmth. Experts affirm that this is a crucial time for bonding, in which cuddling can play an essential role.