Entries in touch (6)

Thursday
Aug272015

The Power of Interpersonal Touch: As It Turns Out, You Can Feel the Love

Alright, I confess, you may not be able to tell if a potential partner is good boyfriend (or girlfriend) material from the way he (or she) feels, but you’d be surprised what you can tell from the way they touch.  Recent research examining the emotional communication through touch revealed that people are able to identify a host of emotions through tactile stimulation alone. These include positive emotions like happiness, gratitude, sympathy, and love, as well as negative emotions like angerfear, disgust, and sadness.1,2 Perhaps even more surprising is that this isn’t just something that happens between relationship partners; perfect strangers are also capable of communicating emotions via touch. So, should you be in the habit of letting unfamiliar others touch you, odds are you’ll be able to clearly perceive their intent! 

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Friday
Feb062015

Here’s One Valentine’s Day Gift You Can’t Possibly Go Wrong With

Every year around Valentine’s Day people start agonizing about finding the “perfect” gift for their partner, and some spend extraordinary amounts of money on it too. But no matter the effort or financial cost incurred, many of us quickly discover that our gifts provided only fleeting happiness and were quickly forgotten. In order to avoid this outcome, I recommend giving your partner something much more personal this year: touch. It will be much easier on your wallet, and it has the potential to improve your relationship far more than any material object that you and your money can buy. 

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Tuesday
May082012

Hairless Skin and Romantic Love: The Naked Love Theory

A striking feature of human beings is our lack of a thick coat of body hair. Since all other primates have such fur this suggests the primate ancestors of human beings likewise had fur and that, for some evolutionary reason, lost their body hair. But what could this reason be? There are various theories but none is fully adequate.

In a new attempt to explain this loss of body hair I argue that human hairlessness had its origin in the ancestral mother-infant relationship. In the “naked love theory”, as I call it, this hairlessness is ultimately the result of bipedalism or the ability to walk on two feet.

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Thursday
Apr262012

My Partner Has Been Less Affectionate Lately - What Gives?

My boyfriend and are have been dating for about 2 years and we are in our early 20's. Most of our relationship is absolutely amazing - we are great friends, our communication is wonderful, and our sex life is incredible. But lately, my boyfriend has been avoiding kissing me and being affectionate/loving in general. We still have great sex, but he seems distant and whenever I ask him about it he makes up an excuse like "oh, my breath is bad right now" or something. Am I approaching it correctly by being open? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks for your question! I can think of a few potential explanations for the situation you describe. One part of your question that stands out to me is the length of your relationship.

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Friday
Dec162011

Breasts are Best: Can Women Orgasm from Nipple Stimulation?

Some women, though not many, have reported that they can achieve an orgasm simply by having their breasts and nipples stimulated. The idea of a woman experiencing orgasm without any genital touching whatsoever might seem perplexing, but new research suggests that there is actually a sound biological basis for it.

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Tuesday
Dec132011

Slowly Stroke Me (or You): The Power of a Soft Touch

To determine how the brain processes physical touch, researchers used a soft bristled brush to caress participants’ arms at either a quick or a slow pace. MRI scans of participants’ brains revealed activity in the insula, a region of the brain associated with emotional responses, during the slow, sensual strokes. Brain activity was similar when participants watched someone else receive slow strokes, but not when touch was directed toward inanimate objects.  

Morrison, I., Björnsdotter, M., & Olausson, H. (2011). Vicarious responses to social touch in posterior insular cortex are tuned to pleasant caressing speeds. The Journal of Neuroscience, 31(26), 9554-9562.