The human body is literally a miracle. It carries out thousand of processes at the same time, every second of every day, like a well-tuned machine. Except- it is much more intelligent than a machine. Every gland, duct and organ performs a specific function for a very good reason.
You are watching a sappy romantic movie, or maybe looking at childhood photos or maybe just driving- and suddenly something goes into your eye. And tears spring to your eyes. Such a simple reaction. But have you ever paused to think WHY this happens? I bet you don’t know these interesting facts about tears:
1. Babies learn to cry differently in different cultures
2. A Dutch researcher discovered that women in wealthier, Western economies cry much more than women in poorer countries where they have fewer rights
3. There are actually three kinds of tears
Basal tears – clean and lubricate your eyes
Reflex tears – which drain when your eyes are irritated by things like onions or pollen
Emotional tears – This one needs no explanation!
4. There was a time when male factory workers were discouraged from letting their emotions affect factory productivity
5. Research shows that some people are indeed more prone to crying than others!
6. In certain neurological conditions, crying and laughing can happen uncontrollably
Pathological laughing and crying (PLC) can appear as a symptom of a stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and Lou Gehrig’s disease.
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7. There’s a scientific reason behind men’s distaste for women’s tears
Men detect a unique chemical component in the tears women let loose when they’re sad, and it discourages them from feeling sexually aroused, according to a study published in the journal Science. “We conclude that there is a chemosignal in human tears, and at least one of the things the chemosignal does is reduce sexual arousal,” says study author Noam Sobel, a neuroscientist at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.
8. Tears have 3 layers
The lipid layer (oils)
The aqueous layer (water)
The mucous layer (mucin)
9. Tears have the same composition as saliva
They are made up of proteins, salt and hormones.
10. According to a study conducted in 2011, testosterone and sexual arousal take a dip in men after they smell a woman’s tears
11. Crying might really provide psychological relief
Some researchers suggest that emotional tears contain stress hormones, which the body pushes out during the process of crying. One more theory is that crying also releases feel-good endorphins- the same ones that are released during exercising and laughing.
So the next time your girlfriend starts crying during Titanic, or your boyfriend cries during a cricket match, just shrug your shoulders – it’s not their fault, it all comes down to science!