Kissing comes in many flavours, from quick and friendly pecks on the cheek to deep, romantic kisses that really pack a punch.
But as pleasurable as kissing can be, romantic kissing is actually a scientific act that helps us assess potential mates. It even has a scientific name, osculation, and people who study kissing are called Philematologists.
Despite having a fancy name for those who study kissing, we still don’t know a lot about how or why kissing of the romantic kind works, or why it is so crucial to the building of a relationship – but the theory suggests kissing sends chemical signals between a couple, allowing them to assess various characteristics that we can’t process visually or consciously.
Here are 10 crazy kissing facts…
During a passionate, 10-second kiss, up to 80 million bacteria are transferred from one mouth to the other, therefore some people with OCD may find kissing uncomfortable for this reason.
However, it turns out that this transfer of bacteria is actually a good thing. It can boost your body’s immunity which, ultimately, helps you fight off disease.In fact, you are far more likely to fall ill after partaking in something far less intimate, like shaking someone’s unclean hands.
Our first experiences of kissing have nothing to do with romance. As children we’re likely to have been kissed and hugged endlessly by our parents and loved ones, actions that shore up our need for love and security. As such, kissing, generally has lifelong associations with love and affection.
In order to kiss, you need to be nose to nose, and lip to lip, so, especially in the early stages of a new romance, you’re able to use your sense of smell, taste and touch to assess things about your new love you may not be able to assess initially or from a distance.
65 per cent of people tilt their heads to the right instead of to the left when lining up a kiss.
Yep, that’s 58 HOURS! According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the longest kiss ever recorded was between Thai couple Ekkachai and Laksana Tiranarat, who locked lips for 58 hours, 35 minutes and 58 seconds on December 14, 2013. Not sure why they couldn’t have held on another two seconds to get to the 58 hours and 36 minute mark!
While kissing can burn calories, it doesn’t really burn that many. A quick kiss can burn three calories and a more passionate kiss can burn five…
Wait… what? According to a study in Applied and Environmental MIcrobiology, kissing helps your teeth fight decay because the salivary mucins, which are the gel-forming components of mucus, protects your mouth from forming too much Streptococcus mutans, which is bad bacteria that adheres to your tooth surface creating by-products that can dissolve your tooth enamel.
When you pucker up, your orbicularis oris (the muscle that controls the movement of your mouth) kicks into gear. This very complex muscle comprises 146 muscles, every one of which is used with every kiss. So there’s another benefit of a hearty pash; your face gets a workout, quite literally!
Oxytocin is also known as the ‘love hormone’ and when it is released in increases an individual’s feeling of attachment towards their mate. It is also said to increase a woman’s desire to nurture, and has an overall positive impact on a couple’s bond.
According to The Art of Kissing, 53 per cent of women prefer to kiss clean-shaven men. However, 33 per cent of women like to kiss men with a little stubble now and then.
When psychologist John Bohannon and his research team from Butler University in the US surveyed 500 people to look at how they remembered a variety of milestone life experiences, guess what had made the greatest impression?
You got it – their first kiss. In fact most people could recall up to 90% of the details of how it unfolded, regardless of how long ago that first smooch had occurred.
Believe it or not, men who kiss their wives in the morning live, on average, five years longer than those who don’t!