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How Hugs Heal — Have You Had a Hug Today?

hug benefits

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  • From birth to death, touch is an important part of your emotional and physical health as it triggers the release of hormones such as dopamine and oxytocin, and reduces the amount of cortisol in your body
  • Health benefits that result from hugs include a reduction in feelings of sadness, lower blood pressure, slowed heart rate, reduced anxiety and increased compassion
  • You may be able to increase the number of hugs and touch you get each day by staying tuned in to others who want hugs, giving hugs and engaging in therapeutic touch activities

By Dr. Mercola

From the time you were born until the day you die, touch is an important part of your emotional and physical health. Infants deprived of touch grow up with developmental and cognitive delays, attachment disorders and higher risk of serious infections. On the other hand, premature infants who are held skin-to-skin exhibit better cognitive skills, are more resilient to stress and have more organized sleep patterns, even 10 years later.


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