Daily hugs diminish the chance to get sick
Friday, April 03, 2020
"Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University examined the interplay between exposure to illness, social support, and daily hugs. In the name of science (and possibly a hundred bucks), 404 healthy adults agreed to inhale nasal drops that exposed them to the common cold. First, the researchers drew blood samples to confirm that the volunteers were not immune. Then they surveyed the participants over fourteen consecutive days, asking about the disagreements and hugs received. Finally, they exposed volunteers to the cold virus and monitored symptoms, such as mucus production, in quarantaine for five days. Those who got daily hugs were 32 percent less likely to get sick.
Hugs don't make you impervious to a cold, it turns out. But the huggers who did get sick didn't get AS sick. They had less severe symptoms and got better faster. The more hugs, the better, yes. But just one a day seemed to make a difference. (...) Ideal hug length seems to be between six and twenty seconds."
From 'The Rabbit Effect' by Kelli Harding
Of course right now it may be best to not hug anyone except our own partners if they're healthy... but we CAN try to, for example, stroke our own hand... pet a dog or a cat... hug a teddy bear... and try self-massage - think of massaging your own feet, for example. And: don't forget to pat yourself on the back!