Updated: May 18, 2021
Touch has the power to heal, console, and even inspire. Touch is essential to human survival and can have a profound effect on our health and well-being. Lack of touch is a reminder that limited touch is not the way human beings are meant to function, we are meant to touch, we are meant to connect.
The last year has deprived us all of touch – we no longer shake hands to greet, high five in celebration, kindly touch a stranger's arm to console – things are different, social distancing is hard. The positive and powerful effects of touch have become increasingly clear as our daily actions have shifted. One thing that has not changed – we need to touch and we need to be touched.
But, where is the connection and how does something as simple as touch influence our body and impact our wellbeing? Touch is powerful for all. From humans to animals, safe touch lowers levels of stress hormones, leading to decreased stress and anxiety while boosting positive neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine. The skin’s superficial sensory receptors are constantly gathering information from the outside world, communicating with the brain, and sending signals throughout the body. The warm summer breeze, the soft fur of a pet, the heat from fire – all of these feelings are possible because of the largest organ, our skin. When we experience safe touch we stimulate the release of feel-good hormones that impact our body, mind, and spirit.
The benefits of physical touch go beyond social bonding and can manifest positively in your physical body. The increased levels of dopamine and serotonin released can help regulate your mood, relieving stress and anxiety. Physical touch is known to improve the function of your immune system and can even lower blood pressure and heart rate. The benefits of this human connection are simply powerful, an important part of human survival.
As a massage therapist, I am saturated by touch. My work is created by offering something that every human requires and the therapeutic benefits for my clients and myself are profound. Living in a world, living in a time where our bodies are in a constant state of stress, exhaustion, and strain, touch has the incredible ability to calm and heal.
Today I encourage you to give a hug, hold a hand, connect with your loved ones – your touch is powerful, your touch is healing and should be shared.
Stephanie McCutchin is a Licensed Massage Therapist and owner ofSakom Massage and Wellness. The word Sakom is inspired by the Menominee language and translates to extending peace to yourself and others. Creating a peaceful space for clients to relax, recharge, and recuperate is the main focus at Sakom. Stephanie’s practice is located in the historicWillow Tree Wellness center in the heart of Lodi, Wisconsin. The center is solely dedicated to professional healers who offer a variety of services. To learn more about massage and to book your appointment today call, 608-564-5330 orclick here.