Tickle Ear To Slow Down Ageing: Study

People often feel that tickling only bring giggles for a short period but even that smiles can provide numerous benefits attached to it.

According to a new study, researchers found out that tickling ear therapy can help in slowing the ageing process. Researchers from the University of Leeds, United Kingdom found that the continuous ear therapy for two weeks leads to physiological wellbeing, improving quality of life, sleep, and frame of mind. 

The research published in the journal Aging highlighted that the therapy named transcutaneous Vagus Nerve Stimulation (Ear Tickle) provides the ear with a painless electric current sending a signal to the body’s nervous system through the vagus nerve and slows down an important factor related to ageing.  

Further, the therapy aids in protecting individuals from life-threatening diseases acquired as people grow older, like, hypertension (high blood pressure), heart diseases and atrial fibrillation.  

Providing the study as a substantial proof, researches stressed that Tickle therapy possesses the potential to recalibrate the body’s internal control system, hence improves the overall health of individuals.  

“The ear is like a gateway through which we can tinker with the body’s metabolic balance, without the need for medication or invasive procedures. We believe these results are just the tip of the iceberg,” said Beatrice Bretherton, from the University of Leeds. 

“We are excited to investigate further into the effects and potential long-term benefits of daily ear stimulation, as we have seen a great response to the treatment so far,” Bretherton said. 

In the human body, the automatic nervous system plays a significant role in controlling body’s involuntary actions like breathing, blood pressure, and digestion and has two different parts, sympathetic and parasympathetic which work in opposite ways to provide a balance to these activities.  

Further, as the body gets older, sympathetic way tends to dominate over the parasympathetic, hence creating an imbalance which works as an invitation to new disease leading to the breakdown of healthy bodily function. 

Over the time, a lot of study has been done by clinicians for the potential usage of electrical currents in influencing the nervous system and have already found that the vagus nerve, a major nerve of the parasympathetic system can play a significant role in tackling issues like depression, epilepsy, obesity, stroke, tinnitus, and heart conditions.  

Although to gain these positive effects from the vagus nerve, it requires a surgery to implant electrodes in the neck region and shockingly it comes with some side-effects too and the only branch of it which can be triggered without surgery is the one located in skin of specific parts of outer ear and hence this research provides a major boost to continue research on the benefits of vagus nerves.  

Tags assigned to this article:
Ageing health Vagus Nerve Old Age


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