In fact, it's a human need. Humans are wired to have a deep longing for physical contact. Our need for physical affection with human beings is rooted in our biology, as touch and close connections with others is of huge importance in our overall well-being, mental health, and survival.
As humans, we crave connection and interaction. And sometimes during certain seasons of our lives, many of us will experience a level of touch deprivation, also known as skin hunger. “Humans are born with an innate need for physical touch.”
Psychotherapist Lucy Beresford added that we crave touch because it plays a fundamental role in our very existence. “Touch is part of our life from the very beginning, at birth, and conveys love and care without words,” she said.
Never be embarrassed for craving physical intimacy.
It is absolutely normal to want it but this is where you need to place your bets smartly. Don't put yourself in situations you would rather avoid and no hearts will be broken, including your own.
According to experts, touch starvation may cause feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. These effects can trigger further issues. Your body releases cortisol to overcome stress, suppressing the digestive and immune system and increasing your: heart rate.
When you don't get enough physical touch, you can become stressed, anxious, or depressed. As a response to stress, your body makes a hormone called cortisol. This can cause your heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tension, and breathing rate to go up, with bad effects for your immune and digestive systems.
Men Find Sex Significant
For many, sex is a very important act between two committed people. And just like most women, men find sexual intimacy to be most satisfying within a committed relationship.
The lack of physical touch, emotional connection, and sexual intimacy can lead to feelings of loneliness, depression, and low self-esteem. It can also cause physical symptoms such as headaches, insomnia, and decreased libido.
When you feel like something is lacking within you, you may crave someone. When you're emotionally all over the place on some level, you may crave someone. Feeding into a memory, the way a person made you feel or a desire that you possibly have been suppressing, that too can cause you to crave someone.
A person may become touch starved when they do not receive enough physical or emotional interaction from others. They may crave hugs, handshakes, or even a simple smile from a stranger. When there is a significant decrease in human interaction, someone might begin to feel isolated or experience symptoms of depression.
Men who are attracted to you might even engage in more touch. If a man actively tries to touch you during your interaction, it may mean he wants to get closer to you or close the distance between you two.
To strengthen your relationships you may want to work on four types of intimacy: physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual closeness. Intimacy, in general, refers to the level of proximity between two people.
Going without wanted physical touch can have adverse health impacts like increased anxiety and trouble sleeping, experts say. No physical intimacy can also lead to touch starvation, which can contribute to loneliness, isolation, and even compromise your immune system.
People who don't get their dose of affectionate touch seem less happy, more lonely, and have a higher likelihood of suffering from depression, mood and anxiety disorders, as well as secondary immune disorder.
Men secretly crave to talk about their feelings, men want to be understood, they want to know how to be more vulnerable in relationships, to let their emotions out, and — just like everyone else — want others to care about their feelings. As humans, we need to feel connected to others–to build emotional intimacy.
The highest level of intimacy, requires the greatest amount of trust in our relationship. It is only when we feel truly safe with somebody, that we become willing to share the deepest core of who we are. It's up close and personal.
Our bodies are designed to respond to touch, and not just to sense the environment around us. We actually have a network of dedicated nerve fibers in our skin that detect and emotionally respond to the touch of another person — affirming our relationships, our social connections and even our sense of self.
One of the most common causes of thoughts like “I don't like being touched anymore” is underlying problems in the relationship. When we hold resentment towards our husbands, we don't feel connected with them. Often the negative feelings towards our partners manifest as sexual aversion.
Hugging and other forms of nonsexual touching cause your brain to release oxytocin, known as the "bonding hormone." This stimulates the release of other feel-good hormones, such as dopamine and serotonin, while reducing stress hormones, such as cortisol and norepinephrine.
Research has shown that it takes 8 to 10 meaningful touches a day to maintain physical and emotional health. Studies show that “touch signals safety and trust, it soothes” (source).
As author and family therapist Virginia Satir once said, “We need four hugs a day for survival. We need eight hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth”.