While this stream of salty tears blurs your vision and makes your eyes puffy, you might wonder what benefits could the cascade of tears have on your psyche?
When you shed emotional tears, you are actually eliminating toxins and hormones from your body that accumulate during stress. Plus, tears are capable of calming your iris and soothing your eyes. However, for those who are beauty-conscious, you’ll want to wash away your tears before going to bed to avoid puffy and swollen eyes the next morning.
Also, tears purge negative energy out of your body, allowing for new, positive energy to build up. So, crying is normal, it is nothing to be ashamed of. Just grab a box of tissues, cry your heart out and let go of all your sorrows reading these benefits of crying.
Here are some of the surprising reasons why crying is actually good for you.
1. Helps Flush Out Toxins
Crying helps rid your body of harmful toxins and chemicals, some of which raise your levels of cortisol, the stress-related hormone.
Like other exocrine secretions including urinating, sweating and exhaling, crying helps purge the body of excess stress chemicals and unwanted toxins that build up from emotional tension and may end up affecting your health adversely.
The tears help in releasing toxins and chemicals like the adrenocorticotropic hormones (ACTH) and protein prolactin, while inducing leucine-enkephalin (an endorphin) that acts as natural painkiller for the body.
In fact, when it comes to eliminating toxins, tears are similar to natural therapy or massage sessions, but they cost a lot less!
However, cleansing is possible only through stress-related tears. It has nothing to do with tears caused by physical irritants.
2. Helps Deal with Stress
Crying is a safe and effective way to deal with stress.
Emotional tears are a major reason for the release of excess cortisol from the body. While you cry, your tears eject this hormone, thus actually relieving stress and tension and making you feel better.
Not only this, tears contain 30 times more manganese (a mood-altering mineral) than your blood. Thus, crying eliminates this from the body and makes you feel lighter and stress-free.
During stressful times, it is important to cry. This will help reduce the risk for a heart attack and brain damage. Stress is also linked to a number of health problems including heart disease, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes and obesity.
Moreover, crying removes chemicals like ACTH that build up in the body during stress. Removal of this chemical is important as it triggers cortisol, which can further lead to several health issues.
A good cry can make your feel much better during stress. It can even help
3. Improves Mood
Watching a sad movie and crying will initially cause your mood to take a dip, but subsequently your mood returns to higher than baseline levels.
Crying releases endorphins, the ‘feel-good’ hormones, into the body that make you feel great. Moreover, endorphins have a slight sedating effect that helps you sleep better after crying.
A 2011 study published in the Journal of Research in Personality evidenced the truth of the statement that crying episodes result in mood improvement.
A 2014 study published in Frontiers in Psychology revealed that crying can be self-soothing and can help elevate your mood, better than any antidepressant.
To substantiate the statement, a study was conducted in 2015 and published in Motivation and Emotion. Researchers observed the relation between crying and mood recovery and found that although you face initial deterioration of mood following crying, it apparently takes some time for the mood to recover, and it becomes even less negative than before the emotional event.
However, people with anxiety or mood disorders are less likely to benefit from crying.
4. Improves Vision
The act of crying helps clean and protect the eyes from irritants as well as improves vision.
When your eyes come under attack of some foreign bodies or irritants, your lacrimal glands get activated to stimulate more fluid into the eyes and wash and drain out the irritant.
This fluid, also known as reflex tears, contains glucose and lysozyme, antibacterial and antiviral enzymes that protect and nourish the cells on the surface and inside the eyes. It works to dissolve and break down the outer protective wall of the bacteria, thus killing them and preventing any damage to the eyes.
Moreover, the National Eye Institute states that crying helps keep the mucous membranes in the eyes hydrated and lubricated. It continuously bathes the surface of the eyes with fluids that keep it moist and wash away all the debris and dirt.
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