The Good Side of Yawning | Benefits of a Yawn

The Good Side of Yawning | Health Benefits of a Yawn…

Every human yawns, likewise animals. Particularly among humans, a yawn can be transferred from one person to another; it is contagious. Yet we fail to learn why this involuntary action is indispensable to human existence, despite the fabulous science of yawning.

Many times, we find ourselves doing an unusual amount of yawning in an attempt to catch our breath. We see yawning as a sign of stress and tiredness alone, even though to yawn has its good sides.

Yes, you heard me right. We have the good side of yawning too.

I know the questions you have in your mind right now:

is yawning good for your health?

yawning good or bad?

is yawning contagious?

is yawning beneficial?

The answer to your questions is “Yes”.

Stay with us, let’s quickly explore the what it means to yawn, the science behind yawning as well as the benefits of a yawn and body stretching.

The Concept of Yawning

A yawn is an automatic and involuntary action consisting of the simultaneous inhalation of air and the widening of the eardrums, followed by an exhalation of breath.

Wikipedia has it that, Oscitation commonly known as ‘Yawning’ most often occurs in adults immediately before and after sleep, during tedious activities and as a result of its contagious quality. It is commonly related to tiredness, stress, sleepiness, or even boredom and hunger.

Yawning consists of an involuntary wide opening of mouth with maximal stretching of jaw, together with a long and deep inhalation through the mouth and nose, followed by a slow expiration, associated with a feeling of comfort. The average duration of a yawn is 5 seconds.

Read: 8 Simple Ways to Quit Snoring Naturally

The Science Behind Yawning and Stretching (Pandiculation)

To stretch your body while waking up from a good sleep can feel fabulous. As you yawn you open your mouth wide for 4-6 seconds, stretch your respiratory tract and diaphragm and inflate your lungs.

We call it stretching but in your body the opposing muscle groups contract together tighter and tighter until joints, limbs and trunk are fully extended and then you reach that peak in tension.

The release of the tension coincides with a sense of pleasure. This coordinated stretching and yawning is an involuntary act called Pandiculation.

Still wondering if yawning is good or bad for the health? See the good side of yawning explained below.

Amazing Health Benefits of a Yawn

Behind the surprising science of yawning, is the health benefits you get when you yawn frequently.

These advantages of yawning will be explained in four categories: the Neurological, sexual, physiological and other benefits of oscitation.

Neurological Benefits of Yawning

Yawning is extremely beneficial to the brain. This underrated involuntary action of ours does a lot more good than we can ponder.

  1. Helps in Cooling Your Brain

A yawn occurs before, during and after instances of abnormal thermoregulation, heat stress and hyperthermia. Patients with clinical disorders such as multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, migraine, stress, anxiety, head trauma, and stroke experience excessive yawning which is followed by temporary cessation of their symptoms. This is because these conditions lead to an increase in the body core temperature, thereby resulting in abnormal thermoregulation, which the body then tries to correct transiently by way of yawning.

A yawn helps to calm your brain by forcing you to breathe deeply and by increasing blood flow to the brain through the act of stretching your jaw.


2. Indicates the Insufficiency of Oxygen in the Brain or Blood (Brain Hypoxia)

Someone yawns when blood or brain oxygenation is insufficient, that is, when oxygen levels decrease and carbon dioxide concentration rises. It is thought to remove “bad air” from the lungs and increase Oxygen circulation in the brain.

Another theory about why we yawn is to allow the in-flow of more oxygen into our bodies. When you yawn, you fill your lungs with oxygen and remove a build-up of carbon dioxide. This might explain why we tend to yawn more in the company of others. Larger groups of people produce more carbon dioxide, which means you need more oxygen to counterbalance.


3. Rejuvenates the Brain

It’s actually the body’s way of rejuvenating the brain (that is, to restore it back to its original state of been young, dynamic and effective) so that it can function more effectively.


Increases mental efficiency

Oscitation stimulates a nerve or the nervous system of the brain that plays a major role in being more conscious and self-reflective, and that also aids in relaxation, alertness, and maintaining a good memory. Any time you breathe deeply, your brain waves slow down and your muscles get the message to relax.


4. Helps the brain maintain balance

Oscitation increases when people are engaged in difficult mental work something you’ve no doubt noticed in your own life. It staves off sleep! It also helps contract the facial muscles, which forces blood through cerebral blood vessels to the brain and this, scientists say, may function to increase alertness.

Read also: 12 Things to do to Look Younger [secrets revealed]

Sexual Benefits of Yawning

5. Yawning Stimulates Arousal

The arousal occurring after yawning is being considered to be due to the mechanical stimulation of carotid body. The carotid bodies are highly vascularized, and their compressions may thus affect their shunt system, thereby leading to release of hormones such as adenosine and catecholamines, which afterwards transfer the arousal response.

Physiological Benefits of Yawning

6. Relieves Ear Pressure

When you yawn, you relieve the ear discomfort and hearing problems that are commonly experienced by people during rapid altitude changes in airplanes and elevators. It is helpful in normalizing the air pressure in the middle ear with the outside air pressure.

7. Helps you ‘reset’ yourself

That’s right ‘it’s almost like pushing the ‘reset’ button on an electronic device. When you yawn, you help regulate your body’s circadian rhythms, or the roughly 24-hour cycle of human behavior and biological activity.

8. Some of the other benefits of of a yawn include increasing memory, improved self-examination, improves your sense of timing, enhances pleasure and lowers stress.

A single yawn can lift your mood. When you yawn, your dopamine levels rise. This activates oxytocin, or pleasure and relationship-bonding chemicals.


Now that you’ve known this, feel free to explore the good side of yawning frequently. Every yawn comes with amazing benefits and your body needs it.

If you have other people who will find this post useful, feel free to share on social media.


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