What troubles does friendship save from?

Decem­ber 17, 2017, 11:45

Do not have a hun­dred rubles, but have a hun­dred friends — the say­ing goes. A new study has shown that friends can improve a per­son­’s well-being.

saves friendship

Sci­en­tists from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oxford came to a sen­sa­tion­al con­clu­sion: the more friends, the bet­ter a per­son copes with … phys­i­cal pain. The exper­i­ment involved 101 healthy peo­ple. The sci­en­tists found out how many close friends each vol­un­teer had. As close friends, we meant peo­ple with whom the vol­un­teer com­mu­ni­cates reg­u­lar­ly (at least once a week) and trusts his secret thoughts.

READ ALSO: 5 types of women you should­n’t be friends with

It turned out that peo­ple with a large num­ber of friends increased the activ­i­ty of endor­phins. These hor­mones are not only respon­si­ble for joy and plea­sure — they reg­u­late pain and give pleas­ant sen­sa­tions. Endor­phins are also asso­ci­at­ed with the estab­lish­ment of social bonds. It turns out that peo­ple with exten­sive con­nec­tions can endure pain bet­ter.

Peo­ple with a large num­ber of friends have increased endor­phin activ­i­ty. These hor­mones are not only respon­si­ble for joy and plea­sure — they reg­u­late pain and pro­vide pleas­ant sen­sa­tions.

girlfriends - photo

aver­age bur­da

Endor­phins are nat­ur­al painkillers, stronger than mor­phine, says Kei­th John­son, study leader. Dur­ing the exper­i­ment, vol­un­teers were asked to sit down with their backs pressed against a wall. Their knees were bent at an angle of 90 degrees (sit­ting on a chair was imi­tat­ed). It is quite dif­fi­cult to sit like this: very quick­ly the legs begin to numb and hurt. How­ev­er, peo­ple with more friends were able to sit in this posi­tion longer, cop­ing bet­ter with pain due to increased endor­phin activ­i­ty.

READ ALSO: A friend con­fid­ed a secret. How not to talk?

Recall that just two months ago, sci­en­tists from the same Oxford Uni­ver­si­ty said: the num­ber of friends in social net­works does not cor­re­spond much to the num­ber of friends in real life.

Peo­ple with more friends coped bet­ter with pain due to increased endor­phin activ­i­ty.

girlfriends whispering - photo


About 4 thou­sand peo­ple were inter­viewed. Imag­ine, each of them, on aver­age, had about 150 friends on social net­works. But in life, peo­ple com­mu­ni­cat­ed with 25–30 peo­ple, and even then irreg­u­lar­ly. It is known that friend­ships grad­u­al­ly fade away in the absence of com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Per­haps social net­works can slow down the process of alien­at­ing peo­ple from each oth­er, sci­en­tists sug­gest.


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The opin­ion of the edi­tors may not coin­cide with the opin­ion of the author of the arti­cle.

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