Sep 7, 2009

The Benefits of Kissing

People, especially lovers are fond of kissing. This activity can signify various kinds of emotions and values, such as respect and passion.

Funny Little Kid

But did you know that there are several health benefits that a kiss can offer aside from the transfer of millions of bacteria from one mouth to another?

A kiss is the touching of one person's lips to another place, which is used as an expression of affection, respect, greeting, farewell, good luck, romantic affection or sexual desire. The word comes from Old English cyssan "to kiss", in turn from coss "a kiss".

A warm, moist human mouth is a commune of over 400 different species of micro-organisms. Billions of the little rascals, who easily out-number the human population of the Earth, live quite happily on teeth, the soft fleshy mouth surfaces, and particularly the tongue. These bacteria thrive on all the sugar and carbohydrates that pass by and multiply until we next brush our teeth. Each time we kiss, we pass a few million on to our partner.

Neuroscientists point out that such kissing employs the lips and tongue; highly sensitive areas with lots of afferent neurons sending signals to the brain to release endorphins. These make us go all gooey. Kissing helps prevent hormone-glucocorticoids from forming which can result in stress and high cholesterol. Instead, kissing creates an adrenaline rush which combats hydrocortisone, a stress hormone. Kissing burns up calories in exercising dozens of little face muscles, increasing blood circulation which helps smooth out wrinkles.

Also, 80% of the bacteria we pass to our partner in a kiss are common to most people. More fortunately, the other of the 20% bacteria unique to one person are usually beneficial to the other because they help the immune system to create antibodies to the new bacteria. It can likewise help our teeth by fighting plaque and cavities because kissing stimulates saliva which contains calcium and phosphorus. Don't stop visiting the dentist, but don't stop kissing either.

There are three types of kissed and they are natural kiss, sensual kiss and symbolic kiss. This types of kisses will be discussed on my next post.


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