Forget the Advil. If you’re in pain, ask your partner to hold your hand.

New research has found that when your significant other holds your hand when you are in pain, your heart and breathing rates get in sync, causing the pain to lessen.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports last week, examined the effects of hand holding with 22 long-term, heterosexual couples.

It’s part of a body of knowledge discovered regarding “interpersonal synchronization,” wherein we physiologically mirror the people we’re with.

“The more empathic the partner and the stronger the analgesic effect, the higher the synchronization between the two when they are touching,” said postdoctoral pain researcher, Pavel Goldstein, the study’s lead author.

What a fascinating study. Why take pills when you may not need to?


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