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The Truth about Yawning

Posted by Data Locker - A Pot of Information on December 18, 2008

yawning0712041A study has concluded that when the head of a person is overheated what comes next is the yawning. We tend to wonder why people yawn; we asked why it happens just before and after sleeping, why certain diseases lead to excessive yawning, and why breathing through the nose and cooling off the forehead often stop yawning.

According to study the major reason why individuals yawn is because of the brain temperature. A researcher named Andrew Gallup said that brains operate most efficiently when cool, and physical adaptations have evolve to allow the maximum cooling of the brain.

Sometimes when we are with our peers, we notice that when one person yawns the other one’s would do so as well. Gallup explained that this is an evolved mechanism which normally happens in order for a group of people to stay alert and active.

There is a study on parakeets which exists in three conditions namely; increasing temperature, high temperature and a moderate control temperature. While the frequency of yawns did not increase during the latter two conditions, it more than doubled when the researchers increased the bird’s ambient temperature.

“Based on the brain cooling hypothesis, we suggest that there should be a thermal window in which yawning should occur,” Gallup said. “For instance, yawning should not occur when ambient temperatures exceed body temperature, as taking a deep inhalation of warm air would be counterproductive. In addition, yawning when it is extremely cold may be maladaptive, as this may send unusually cold air to the brain, which may produce a thermal shock.”

The new findings also explain why tired individuals often yawn, since both exhaustion and sleep deprivation have been shown to increase deep brain temperatures, again prompting a yawn-driven cool down. Yawning additionally appears to facilitate transitional states of the brain, such as going from sleep to waking periods.

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One Response to “The Truth about Yawning”

  1. Dazediva said

    Great article … In fact have written something similar just today and have included your link on my page 🙂

    Have a great day !

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