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Humans have five senses, the sense of taste, the sense of smell, the sense of hearing, the sense of sight, and the sense of touch. While we may think of the human touch as a bonus in our lives, it goes beyond that, it’s a necessity.

To grow close to others and bond with them, we require touch. It is how the human body is built, and it’s easy to understand that when you realize that babies develop through touch bonding with their parents. Without it, they become neglected and cannot develop properly. The same is true on a different scale of adults.

Here are 7 reasons why human touch is something we need daily.

1. Physical touch connects us to others.

When we are touched or touch, our body produces oxytocin. It helps us to connect with the person we are touching and is often referred to as the love or bonding hormone. When you are touched regularly, it’s easier to ease up in social situations and to connect.

2. Physical touch eases anxiety.

Without enough physical touch, our body makes the hormone cortisol. Cortisol puts us on edge and causes our heart rate to increase, along with our blood pressure and breathing rate.

3. Physical touch allows us to give and receive energy.

Everything in the known universe is composed of energy, on a scientific level. Touch is how we transmit energy to others, and also how we receive the energy of others.

4. Physical touch helps us to build relationships.

Early in life, touch is what bonds us to others and cultivates relationships. It does this by stimulating pathways for oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine.

5. Physical touch relieves loneliness.

In a 2017 study, it was found that touch helps feelings of social exclusion and loneliness. The reason for this is because when we are touched, we feel included, connected, and loved. Without it, we grow lonely and feel isolated.

6. Physical touch eases depression.

Since physical touch builds pathways for dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin, all of which produce feel-good hormones, it eases our depression. Without touch for a long time, these pathways can grow out of balance, leading to dysfunction and depression.

7. Physical touch naturally calms us.

Studies show that touch signals to our bodies that we are safe. It calms cardiovascular distress and activates the vagus nerve, which produces the love hormone. In turn, when we are touched, we feel instantly calmed.