The COVID-19 pandemic left people without hugs, handshakes and other forms of physical contact. And this is a serious additional factor for stress, because touches, as scientists have proved, can have a pronounced healing power.
“Tender touch is a way of contact between the biological systems of our bodies. This way the body receives information that it is safe, next to another person who shows love and care. This is extremely important,” says Johannes Eichstedt of Stanford University (USA).
Physical contact is so important that the Rush Medical Center in Chicago even recruits volunteers to embrace the seriously ill children who were born at the center. It is believed that this factor will help newborns overcome illness.
What kind of impact do hugs have? Research shows that gentle touch activates the brain systems involved in the production of dopamine and serotonin, and reduces stress and anxiety. In some cases, touching can reduce pain – studies that confirm this have been conducted with cancer patients and postoperative patients. Today, when the world is raging with pandemics and physical contact is not always possible, scientists recommend people not to lose even a mental connection.