Monday, March 26, 2018

The importance of touch.

The importance of touch.
I originally began studying massage because of its therapeutic value.
It means so much more. We are hardwired by evolution - the experience of touch is necessary for our emotional and physical well-being, down to our very immune system.
I believe that the hyper vigilance that has sprung up regarding touch, including casual social contact, is depriving us of this basic human interaction.
Strokes and hugs are being edged out of our lives, with doctors, teachers and colleagues increasingly hesitant about social touching. Is this hypervigilance of boundaries beginning to harm our mental health?
Illustration by Harriet Lee-Merrion
 Illustration by Harriet Lee-Merrion
hen did you last touch someone outside your family or intimate relationship? I don’t mean a brush of the fingers when you took your parcel from the delivery guy. I mean: when did you pat the arm or back of a stranger, colleague or friend? My own touch diary says that I have touched five people to whom I’m not related in the past seven days. One was a newborn and two were accidental (that was the delivery guy). Touch is the first sense humans develop in the womb, possessed even of 1.5cm embryos. But somewhere in adulthood what was instinctive to us as children has come to feel awkward, out of bounds.

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