Categories: Interesting

The Reason Why Yawning Is Contagious

Despite its dull surface, yawning is actually one of the greatest mysteries in the studies of human behavior.

The experts from the University of Nottingham in England have discovered something significant regarding one of the most mundane thing of all – yawning. Their study revolved around the topic questions of the century – Why do people yawn? And why do we yawn when someone around us does? Surprisingly, these questions led them to something big.

Despite its dull surface, yawning is actually one of the greatest mysteries in the human behavioral studies.

One of the core reasons why we yawn is the pathological repetitions called Echophenomena.

Echophenomena, also known as echo phenomena, is “automatic imitative actions without explicit awareness.” When it occurs, we attempt to imitate the actions of others around us.

Echophenomena also happens on animals that can yawn like dogs.

Source: Pixabay
Unfortunately, the neural basis for Echophenomena is still a mystery.

Despite its connection to something mundane like yawning, Echophenomena is actually deeply associated to several serious clinical conditions like epilepsy, dementia, autism, and even Tourette syndrome. This connection is enough reason for the University of Nottingham professors like Stephen Jackson and Georgina Jackson to conduct a research about it.

During their research, they tested the motor excitability and the neural basis for yawning through transcranial magnetic stimulation. An AskMen report tell us that the test had the volunteers view footage of people yawning. The participants were allowed to try to stifle their yawn or just allow themselves to. Throughout the course of the test, the number of yawns and stifled yawns were counted. The results led Georgina Jackson to conclude:

This research has shown that the ‘urge’ is increased by trying to stop yourself, using electrical stimulation we were able to increase excitability and in doing so increase the propensity for contagious yawning. In Tourette if we could reduce the excitability we might reduce the ticks and that’s what we are working on.

Talking about the results of the study, Stephen Jackson was quoted saying:

If we can understand how alterations in cortical excitability give rise to neural disorders we can potentially reverse them, We are looking for potential non-drug, personalised treatments, using TMS that might be affective in modulating imbalances in the brain networks.

Surprisingly, the test led them to promising clues on treating various sicknesses. However, it appears that more research is still needed.

Leave a Comment

Recent Posts

Bees Kill Penguins by Stinging Them in the Eyes

Swarm of bees stings the eyes of penguins in Cape town 60 penguins died from…

November 16, 2021

2000 Kilogram Sunfish Caught Off North African Coast

A massive ocean sunfish measuring 2,000 kilograms was caught on North African Coast It is named Mola alexandrini or…

November 16, 2021

Man Embezzles $57K in COVID-19 Relief to Buy Pokemon Cards

A businessman in Georgia utilized the Covid-19 relief to buy a limited edition Charizard Pokemon card He committed…

November 8, 2021

Florida Man Catches and “Recycles” Alligator in Driveway

Man captures an alligator in his neighbor's yard in FloridaHe uses a trash can to…

November 1, 2021

Man Shocks Reporter on How He’d Spend the Lottery Winnings

Man surprises the reporter with his answer on how he would use the money if…

November 1, 2021

Man Joins Search Operation Not Realizing He’s the One Missing

A man was lost in the forestA man joins a search party looking for himselfHe…

November 1, 2021

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience.