If you’re a natural cuddler, it’s time to embrace your touchy-feely side and enjoy these rather interesting benefits of cuddling!
If you’re a fan of personal space and not really into the whole cuddling deal, what you’re about to learn about the benefits of cuddling might make you change your mind.
Did you know that there are many benefits of cuddling? Your health thanks you for embracing, quite literally, your cuddly side!
As humans, we need contact with other people to boost our overall mood and make us feel better. When you hug it on down with someone, whether you’re in love with them or not, your body releases feel-good hormones which calm you down and boost your overall health and well-being.
If you can cuddle with an animal, it seems the benefits are even greater!
If you’re not sure if all of this is hear-say or not, let’s check out some benefits of cuddling that you might not expect to be true. But they are!
The 8 biggest benefits of cuddling you need to know
Grabbing someone for a random cuddle is never a good thing. You do actually need consent to cuddle someone! However, if you have a close friend, family member, pet dog or cat, or a significant other, make time for cuddles in your day and grab these rather useful and quite surprising benefits of cuddling.
#1 Cuddling helps reduce stress levels. We all feel stress from time to time. It’s never a good thing if you allow it to build up. However, cuddling could be a good way to ease all of that and distract you from the problem at hand.
The reason is because when you’re stressed, your body releases a hormone called cortisol, which is known as the stress hormone. To counteract it, when you cuddle, your body then releases oxytocin, which is known to be the love hormone or the cuddling hormone *you’ll hear lots of different words for it*.
#2 Cuddling might boost your heart health. Yes, a cuddle a day really could keep the doctor away… to a certain degree! Cuddling can reduce your blood pressure and stress levels, and linked to that, health. By reducing all of this you’re boosting the strength and health of your heart and reducing your chances of developing rather nasty issues, such as heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
#3 Cuddling can act as a way to relieve pain. The oxytocin released during cuddling can actually work in other ways, aside from making you feel good and lowering stress. It can actually help you feel less pain. It blocks the regular pain signals that cause you to notice when something is hurting.
So, if you fall and twist your ankle, a cuddle afterwards might help to take the edge off the discomfort. That’s certainly one the benefits of cuddling you might not have expected! [Read: How to find your happiness from within yourself]
#4 Cuddling can boost your immune system. During the winter, it’s likely that you pick up every cold and virus going around. However, if you make time for cuddling, your immune system will thank you for it. You’re less likely to fall foul of those regular seasonal illnesses. It’s worth noting that you’re not going to grab this illness by cuddling someone random. Make sure you choose someone you actually care about!
#5 Cuddling helps boost the bond between you and your loved ones. Human contact is needed for us to feel good about ourselves. Isolation is a key step towards depression and anxiety. However, cuddling can also strengthen the closeness and the bond you have with your partner, helping you to have a happier relationship all-round. Again, it’s all down to that oxytocin! [Read: How to take care of yourself emotionally and avoid falling apart]
#6 Cuddling may help you sleep better. Cuddling is relaxing and calming. If you’re in a relationship, make sure you cuddle up to your partner before bed. You’ll notice that you get a better night’s sleep. If you find it a little uncomfortable to fall asleep while cuddling, a quick cuddle before you fall asleep is enough to grab the benefits. Then move away to your own part of the bed to sleep with the space you need. [Read: Do guys like cuddling? 15 truths you probably never knew]
#7 Cuddling is a bonding tool for new parents and babies. Skin to skin contact, also known as cuddling, is the perfect way to bond with your new baby. Both mother and father can do this. It’s a good way for the father to feel bonded to the baby, when they don’t have the option of breastfeeding, like the mother.
#8 Cuddling improves your mood. This particular benefit of cuddling is about that oxytocin release once more. Oxytocin is a calming, loving, and stress reducing hormone. It’s also a relaxing and feel good hormone, which can help to boost your mood after a long day.
There’s a reason why you feel better after you’ve returned home and had a cuddle with your loved one. The oxytocin calms your mind, relaxes your body, and you feel that link to someone you care about. So, if you’re having a bad day, make sure you make time for cuddles! [Read: These health benefits of hugging will make you want to cuddle more!]
Are you surprised?
How many of those benefits of cuddling were you already aware of? You might have heard of a few, but there’s likely to be a few which you didn’t know about.
We all have bad days and difficult times. While there are many ways to deal with life’s stresses and strains, sometimes the basic, natural options work the best. Can you get anything more natural than a cuddle? No! This is the easiest way to improve mood and health, all with just your own body. [Read: The best cuddling positions that’ll make you a much better cuddler]
Of course, choose someone you care about and trust to really feel the benefits of cuddling. It’s not likely to work quite so well if you’re cuddling someone at work who is having a hard time, if you don’t really have an emotional connection to them. Despite that, the human closeness will help some. So if someone needs a hug and wants one, go for it!
However, cuddling someone you love is the best feeling in the world. Being enclosed in someone’s arms, warm, protected, and safe is an experience everyone adores. Of course, if you’re feeling agitated and not really in the mood for cuddling, it can be a stifling experience.
For new parents, cuddling is a wonderful way to bond with their new baby, but keep cuddles light. In this case, laying your new baby across your chest is a wonderful way to calm them down, because they hear your heartbeat. You’ll also adore the feeling of having your child so close to you.