Crying is often the result of feelings of sadness and frustration, but after crying many people experience a feeling of release and catharsis (Byslma, 2008). Humans are the only species that shed tears emotionally. Crying is something that all people of all ages and cultures do (Hendriks, 2008). Since crying is a trait that has evolved solely in humans, there must be some sort of evolutionary advantage to emotional crying. Many studies have been done which examine the effect that crying has on the body, and most of them have actually found that crying actually has a negative impact physiologically (Hendriks, 2008). However, many people including psychologists have always believed that crying is good for you (Hendriks, 2008). Perhaps crying developed evolutionarily for a non-physiological reason. “Attachment Theory” suggests that crying is a behavior that is natural to humans from birth. As an infant, babies learn that crying will result in comforting, which creates a relationship bond. This behavior is continued to create attachments in life (Hendriks, 2008).
Crying/Weeping has numerous benefits, which ones should we mention? here are few scientific benefits mentioned to the readers.
1) Sad tears are totally different than Stuff-stuck-in-your-eye tears: As far back as 1957, it was revealed that tears caused by emotion are chemically different than tears caused an eye irritant. In fact, the components of tears are far more complex than we would imagine. One psychological study had some volunteers watch a sad movie and later cut onions while collecting their tears during both activities. They found that the chemical make-up of the two sets of tears were vastly different. Sad tears include stress hormones and various toxins!
2) Release the toxins: Research indicates that there is a significant increase in the type and number of stress hormones produced in our bodies prior to crying. If you don’t actually cry, these toxins remain in you body. Biomedical studies explain that stress hormones negatively affect almost every system in the body including the cardiovascular, gi, musculoskeletal, and immune systems. It’s pretty evident that crying the primary method for the body to eliminate these harmful stress hormones and protect you adverse effects. So do it!
3) Mood Benefits: After analyzing over 3,000 reports of crying episodes, Jonathan Rotttenberg, USF Assistant professor of psychology, reports in a paper in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology that “the majority of participants reported mood benefits after crying.” Most of us know this to be true: you feel better after a good cry!
4) Calming effects: Crying has calming effects such as the slowing of breath. It has been shown that during the cry, you may experience increased heart rate and sweating; however, the calming effects usually last longer than any unpleasant arousal. You’ll feel this calm after you cry which accounts for why people usually remember the pleasant side of crying.
5) Other good stuff: Emotional tears open up the lungs, exercise the eyes, and soften the temper. The release you feel is one of the mind, body, and soul.
6) Preventing emotions from being suppressed: do you know that sometimes people get depressed because of suppressed emotions? Do you know that many times we feel bad just because we have some emotions inside of us that needs to come out, crying is one of the best healthy ways to get out those suppressed emotions.
7) You’ll look better! Alan Wolfelt, University of Colorado Medical School professor, works primarily with people who are mourning the passing of a loved one. Dr. Wolfelt states, “In my clinical experience with 1000s of mourners, I observe changes in physical appearance after the expression of tears. Not only do people feel better after crying, but they also look better.”
“Crying is a highly evolved behavior,” explains Dr. Hasson. “Tears give clues and reliable information about submission, needs and social attachments between one another. My research is trying to answer what the evolutionary reasons are for having emotional tears.
Other References Links :
- · Benefits of Crying
- Dr. Oren Hasson, a professor at Tel Aviv University, recently conducted a study in which he studied different types of crying and the benefits of crying.
- · Check out our follow up article on The Secret of Crying.
- Association for Psychological Science (2008, December 19). Cry Me a River: The Psychology of Crying. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081217123831.htm
- Possible health benefits of crying by Dr. Kevin Keough
- The Effects and Blessings of Mourning over Imam Husain (a.s.)
- Mourning over Imam Husain (a.s.) from Ahle Sunnah
- Mourning over Imam Husein (a,s) is not Innovation (Bidat)