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Of course, we all know cuddling someone you love is fun and feels good, but did you know that it is good for us, too? That’s right, there are some incredible benefits of cuddling, including how it affects our physical and mental health, and even improves our relationships.
Cuddling benefits don’t just come from romantic relationships, either. You’ll find boosts to your health and relationships from cuddling up next to your family and friends, too! Even just sitting next to your friend with your arm around them will likely offer some cuddling benefits.
Most of us don’t need any more motivation to want to snuggle up next to the person we love, but reading through these cuddling benefits might have you looking around to see where your favorite cuddle partner is!
Benefits of Cuddling
Serotonin is one of our “happy chemicals” and cuddling helps to increase serotonin levels in our brains, relieving anxiety and giving us a natural mood boost. When it comes to natural antidepressants, is there anything more wholesome than just having a bit of a cuddle to get those happy hormones flowing again?
Promotes Relationship Satisfaction
In a 4 week study done of married couples, it was found that even while controlling for other factors, increasing cuddling in a relationship improves the levels of satisfaction with the relationship that couples feel. This means that even while everything else in the relationship stays just about the same, increasing the time spent cuddling together improves the way that couples view their relationship! What a lovely and simple “relationship hack.”
Oxytocin is released in the body by touch and is often referred to as the “love hormone” because it helps to inspire all those warm and fuzzy feelings we have towards each other. Oxytocin also plays an important role in many different processes related to birth and breastfeeding and is a part of the reason most mothers and babies feel an immediate bond with one another. It’s an important part of any close, loving relationship; Harvard health has also called it the “cuddle hormone.”
Increases the Likelihood of Sexual Intimacy
Of course, this doesn’t apply to all cuddling situations, but if you’re cuddling your significant other, it often does. Sex is a very important part of a healthy romantic relationship, and one of the top benefits of cuddling is that it very often leads to more sexual intimacy in a romantic relationship. If you’re looking for more of that, it might be time to up your cuddle game!
May Lower Blood Pressure
There was a study done by the University of North Carolina that found that there is a link between the amount of hugs a woman recieves each day and her blood pressure! Of course, a good cuddle is just one long hug, so if you’re someone who is riding the line of high blood pressure, you might try increasing your daily cuddle quota. Maybe you’ll lower your blood pressure a bit while you get your cuddle on. This seems like a win for everyone, right?
Stronger Emotional Intimacy
The ability to be vulnerable with each other and trust each other with our most authentic selves isn’t easy for most, but spending time together cuddling helps to promote those feelings of safety in a relationship that allow for us to show up authentically. Just stop and think of all the times you’ve revealed a deep, personal truth about yourself while snuggled up to your partner. Cuddling helps to promote those feelings of safety in a relationship.
Another one of the great physical benefits of cuddling is that it can lower cortisol. Cortisol is one of the stress hormones and having high cortisol levels may cause weight gain, increased blood sugar levels, flare-ups of digestive problems, suppressed immunity, sleep issues, and more. More cuddling certainly seems preferable to high cortisol!
If you don’t have a cuddle buddy in your life right now, did you know that you can actually find a completely platonic cuddle buddy near you through websites like Cuddle Comfort? We really are living in the future here, thank goodness for the internet!
Don’t forget about your furry friends, either. Scoop up your favorite purr or woof master and snuggle up on the couch for a bit. At least long enough to get those happy chemicals flowing!
Doesn’t matter if you’re the Big Spoon or the Little Spoon, everyone benefits from more cuddling in their life. Get out and there and cuddle, already!
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Amy Hartle is the co-founder and owner of Two Drifters, where she blogs about romantic and couples travel, relationships, honeymoons, and more. With a Master’s in English and a BA in Musical Theatre, Amy loves to write quality content as well as to entertain, and she hopes to do a bit of both here on the blog! Amy is happily married to her husband Nathan, and when not working on their sites, Amy & Nathan can be found cuddling, reading, and enjoying delicious lattes.