Traci Pedersen, ‘Gentle Touch May Help Ease Pain of Social Rejection’,, Psych Central (19 Oct 2017)

Unique effects

Researchers tested the impact of a slow, affectionate touch against a fast, neutral touch following social rejection and found a connection between gentle touch and social bonding. (…) As our social world is becoming increasingly visual and digital, it is easy to forget the power of touch in human relations. (…) What is interesting (…) is that social support was optimally conveyed only by a simple, yet specific, instance of touch. No words, or pictures were necessary (…). This finding builds on evidence that the same kind of touch can have unique effects on physical pain and it can have implications for the role of touch in various mental and physical care settings.


Title: The soothing function of touch: affective touch reduces feelings of social exclusion
Author: Mariana von Mohr, Louise P. Kirsch, Aikaterini Fotopoulou
Publication: Scientific Reports
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Date: Oct 18, 2017