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Spooning Is The Ultimate Cuddling Position

Each year on January 6th, National Cuddle Up Day encourages us to snuggle up with someone for the health benefits and more!

  • Cuddling releases oxytocin. This hormone alone has tremendous health benefits. Besides giving us warm and fuzzy feelings, oxytocin reduces pain.
  • Oxytocin also helps reduce heart disease, lowers blood pressure, stress, and anxiety.
  • Communication is more than just e-mails, texts, or conversation. Physical touch can communicate trust, commitment, safety, and reassurance.
  • Cuddling also boosts sexual desire. Dopamine is released, stimulating the brain to seek pleasure. But dopamine also can improve memory and focus as well.
  • Don’t have someone to cuddle up with?  Make an appointment for a massage.  Studies show massage provides similar benefits.
  • It Helps You Sleep. This one might seem like a “duh,” but cuddling helps you fall asleep. There’s the obvious — you’re comfy in bed, so falling asleep is the next natural thing — but then our old friend oxytocin also comes into play.
  • It promotes bonding. The first health benefit of oxytocin that scientists isolated was that it’s released in order to promote bonding between women and their babies. But it turns out it’s not just great for mother/child bonding — it’s also excellent for connecting more strongly with a romantic partner.
  • It Boosts Your Immune System. In addition to oxytocin, cuddling also releases the “happy hormone” serotonin. Those two together work to boost your immune system. One 2014 study from researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found that people who hugged more were less likely to contract a cold after being exposed to the cold virus and that those who did get sick had less severe symptoms.
  • It Improves Your Heart Health. It’s good for your ticker if your blood pressure’s lower and your stress levels are down. Scientists say it’s clearer that women get this benefit from cuddling, but it seems to be true for both sexes.
  • Spooning is the ultimate cuddling position.
  • The butt “cheek-to-cheek”. This position means you want to maintain a connection with your partner, but you value your freedom and sleep is high on your agenda.
  • The “sweetheart cradle”. This position is often used when you need to be nurtured. Your partner lies on their back and holds you while your head rests on their chest. It’s a comforting form of cuddling that creates feelings of trust and well-being.
  • Helps you communicate emotions.   Research confirms that touch is a way to communicate emotions such as love, gratitude, and sympathy between loved ones. Happiness and sadness can be communicated through touch, too. Surprisingly, the results of one 2009 study found that touch also fosters emotional communication between strangers.
  • It relieves pain. A good cuddle may give you more than just moral support after an injury. The oxytocin it releases can help block pain signals. It works so well that doctors are trying to figure out how to treat people with a lab-made form of it.
  • Hug Your … Phone?  In one study, people were asked to hug a human-shaped cushion with a built-in phone and talk to a partner through the device. The results showed they got one of the big benefits of a real embrace: lower stress hormones. Scientists are studying this effect to see if it might boost social support in this age of technology.
  • What are professional cuddlers? Put simply, they’re people who get paid to platonically snuggle with clients. Here are some professional cuddler facts that explain why we should maybe shine a light into the dimly lit room of platonic spoons and squeezes.
    • There Is a Cuddle ‘Bible’. In lieu of training, most cuddle companies require employees to read up on Cuddle Sutra, the book on all things snuggles. Cuddle Sutra takes an extensive look at platonic cuddling and its variations, outlining over 50 different positions.
    • While this service comes as a surprise to many, the demand is clearly there. Companies like Cuddle Up to Me and Snuggle Buddies charge up to $80 per hour for cuddling sessions.
    • There’s a cuddle convention. After the relatively warm reaction to cuddling since its start in 2012, the world’s first cuddling convention, called Cuddle Con, was held on Valentine’s Day in 2015. The convention was intended to provide a space for cuddlers, clients, therapists, and psychologists to come together and speak about the world of warm snuggles.
  • The word “cuddle” first appears in English in the 1500’s
  • In 1992, Temple Grandin, an American spokesperson for autism and diagnosed with mild autism herself, invents the Hug Machine, which helps to alleviate the symptoms of this condition.
  • 2003, University of North Carolina researchers discover that 10 minutes of holding hands and 20 seconds of hugging can reduce blood pressure and heart rate during stressful situations

Sources:

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