Holding Hands May Be The Best Pain Medicine

February 28, 2018

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Science has debated the subject of how men and women experience pain, with many experts agreeing that women recover more quickly from pain and are less likely to allow pain to control their lives.  However sharing pain with touch may give your stronger tolerance it.  A new study looked at 20 couples. Each held their partner with one hand while the woman held a tube in the other.  The tube would fluctuate between cold and hot water.  As the pain of the hot water grew, the partner holding the tube was able to tolerate a higher threshold of pain while the one not holding the water was better able to guess how much it hurt.  The women asked to rate their pain from zero to 100, gave ratings 52% lower after holding hands than if they were separated from their partner. Their partners, also asked to rate the female's pain from zero to 100, were more accurate in their estimation after holding their hand. Scientist believe that two people's brains synchronize when they were holding hands, which can have an analgesic effect when one is suffering pain. It may be that empathy is transferred through touch.  Women were asked to hold the tube because as a general rule women emphasize by touch while most men do not.  The study follows evidence that skin-to-skin touch can reduce babies' pain during medical procedures and adults' anxiety and blood pressure in reaction to stress.

SOURCE: Daily Mail

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