Have you ever wondered why it can be so…cathartic to let loose?
Not just you, either. Your bodies actually need to let it all out from time to time for a reason, and it’s not just to get rid of pollen from a particularly pollen-heavy day.
In a Twitter thread, psychologist and author Dr. Nicole LePera explained why your body is physically trying to balance its hormones when you feel “upset or overwhelmed.”
According to LaPera, crying is connected to your nervous system and your body’s natural impulse to self-regulate, which is why you might cry even in frustrating or unlikely situations. While sadness alone can cause leaky eyes, crying is actually connected to your nervous system.
She elaborated: You will shed a lot of tears when you are angry. Your body has to let go.
Because of this, when you’re in the middle of a passionate argument with your partner, you can barely finish your very eloquent sentence without your voice shaking and your shouting turning into helpless burbling.
According to La Pera, these kinds of tears can occur when you’re in a conflict, are being yelled at or blamed for something, or are emotionally overstimulated or overwhelmed, as well as when you’re happy.
Additionally, there is a scientific explanation for everything.
According to LePera, it comes down to your hormones, such as oxytocin, which is thought to lower stress and anxiety and is typically associated with feelings of happiness. Endorphins, a cheerful little group, also play a role in fun activities.
Both of these are brought on by crying and relieve pain.
The psychologist went on to say: Endorphins and oxytocin are in tears, according to research.
“The parasympathetic attempt to return the body to homeostasis is crying,”
This means that all of the body’s systems are in balance, which is why so many people enjoy watching sad movies.
LaPera went on: “Your body is trying to get you out of fight or flight mode by making you cry.”
This is why we feel at ease and relaxed after crying. The parasympathetic nervous system in our body has been triggered. It makes me feel better.
When your body is in the “rest and digest” state, your parasympathetic nervous system activates. It eases back your pulse, brings down circulatory strain and advances processing.
LaPera also said that crying can be seen as a bad thing, and that many people feel bad about crying, which is not healthy.
In her subsequent statement, she added that “holding back tears can keep us in a dysregulated state.”
The parasympathetic nervous system is activated and cortisol levels, a stress hormone, decrease when you let them out.
According to Harvard Medical School’s Health Blog: Allowing yourself to cry whenever you feel like it is important. If you need to cry, make sure to take your time and locate a secure location.
The fact that crying can “actually be a sign of healing” for many people is even mentioned on the website, further evidence that putting it away is never, if ever, a good idea.