The Psychology of Kissing

About the analysis of the kiss, the science of the kiss, the types of kissing and the social foundations of kissing.

Kissing is one of the oldest human activities. It is the expression of affection, affection or love towards another person. If you look back at the history of kissing, it may be that public kissing didn’t exist a few hundred years ago and is still not allowed in some cultures, but we can safely assume that kissing has existed for thousands of years, even if it’s done in private is a very natural form of human emotional expression.

Psychology students will usually attempt to analyze kissing from a psychoanalytic perspective. A kiss is an oral activity, like smoking or eating, it involves the mouth and can be traced back to the oral phase of psychic development. To some extent, the oral fixation theory may be true. This means that some people are addicted to mouth movements, enjoying mouth sensations and thus also addicted to kissing or related mouth movements. Oral fixation describes certain personalities, but for the most part in this article I will focus on the analysis of a kiss and the science that goes with it.

Kissing involves neural and hormonal activity, and several recent researchers have suggested that dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and sex hormones are released during romantic kisses. Dopamine and serotonin are chemicals (neurotransmitters) and oxytocin is a hormone released by the pituitary gland. When emotions are involved, the amygdala and hypothalamus in the brain are activated and the activation of the amygdala and hypothalamus, the release of chemicals, and the stimulation of the pituitary and sex glands during kissing creates bonding and gives a sense of euphoria in romantic relationships. In non-romantic relationships, kissing creates affection and emotional bonding and is usually experienced among friends, family members, social relationships, and so on. A kiss on the cheek is a type of social greeting and is common in many cultures.

A kiss can be interpreted in many ways and the characteristics of a kiss could be analyzed by length or duration, depth, position or location, facial expressions before and after a kiss, and these elements will ultimately help in the analysis to infer the covert or the obvious motives of kissing.

Since kissing takes place on the human body, we initially only have limited spatial coordinates. No one will hopelessly or passionately kiss a tree or wall, although this type of activity can also be analyzed.

Let’s start with the top of the head. A quick, fleeting kiss on the top of the head indicates affection. Parents kiss their children on the head or forehead. When bosses or co-workers kiss each other on the head, it can come off as condescending and even weird. Forehead kisses are common in families, and older relatives often kiss children or teenagers on the forehead. A quick kiss on the cheek is accepted as a social custom in some cultures and is seen as a sign of formality or formal friendliness and camaraderie. A quick kiss on the cheek is often a sign of bonding, of affection among workers, and of support or encouragement.

As soon as the kiss spreads to other parts of the body, the analysis becomes more complex. Aside from the head or cheek, which are considered affectionate, kisses on the eyes, nose, ears, or chin are considered romantic. Kissing on the nose has an element of affection, but it’s more intimate on the chin.

The first principle is: the further down the kiss goes, the more intimate it becomes. So a kiss on the leg is obviously much more intimate than a kiss on the hand. Lip kissing is of course very intimate and we don’t consider it within that principle. A kiss on the hand is actually a more traditional and formal romantic expression. In ancient times, men proposed to women by kissing the hand. It’s formal romance.

The second principle is: the longer it takes, the more intimate it becomes. So intimacy through kissing is about space and time.

The third principle is that the spatial and temporal aspects determine the motivation of the kiss. This means that a kiss can indicate many expressions including love, romance, sexual attraction, affection, formal support, and the type of kiss or motive is largely determined by the spatial and temporal properties of the kiss.

A long kiss on the front of the neck is bolder than a kiss on the back of the neck. The kiss on the inner surface of the skin like the palm of the hand or the inner wrist or elbow is more intimate than the kiss on the outer surface and so on. Kissing on the inside of the body in public can look a little desperate so needs to be done in private. What about the time aspects? A man sits next to you in the park, talks to you for a while, gives you a quick kiss on the finger and walks away. It’s strange behavior, but it does happen. This is the uncertain kiss. Long-term lovers will engage in longer kisses. Prolonged mouth-to-mouth kisses create bonding and even a level of trust. The mouth, tongue and lips have a large number of nerve endings and are extremely sensitive, so mouth-to-mouth kissing provides increased pleasure. Romantic kissing is, of course, a prelude to sexual relationships.

Let me move on to the third principle, from which you derive the motivation for kissing. Why did a friend kiss you a certain way? As long as the kiss isn’t too long and goes to the cheek or face, it’s a sign of support, encouragement, and affection. Kissing must not have sexual meanings and connotations. Affection between two people is quite possible, even if they are not lovers. Whether of the same or opposite sex, two people can express great love, affection and support for one another and kiss on the head, cheek or face, and such expressions are often natural, especially when working as a team. Let’s say in a soccer team, players kiss and hug other teammates as an expression of encouragement, and the same type of relationship can be seen in teammates working together in each area, and the team members can be male or female, it doesn’t matter. When people are happy about something, they might kiss and hug other people who are close to them, but it’s just an emotional expression and a release of energy that isn’t exactly directed at the other people. Suppose your colleague standing next to you is watching a game, rejoicing at a soccer goal and started hugging you because he was so excited. That doesn’t mean he’s bothering you, he was just expressing his excitement and emotions. But when this type of behavior becomes a habit, you need to be a little more careful and make it a point not to stand next to him. He obviously has other covert motives.

Finally, let’s get down to science. Research has shown that romantic kissing involves endocrine glands and the release of dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and sex hormones like testosterone. Although most forms of kissing involve emotions and activities of the amygdala and hypothalamus in the brain, romantic kissing is triggered by intense chemical reactions in the body and the release of neurotransmitters and hormones. After all, hormones create social bonds, and kissing is one of the social tools that have helped people bond, survive, and create families and societies for millennia. Without kissing, we would be a lonely race and would die out pretty quickly.

Thanks to Saberi Roy | #Psychology #Kissing

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