Why Do We Yawn – Yawning Facts
Why do we yawn?
A yawn is usually accompanied by inhalation of air (or a lungful of whatever the surrounding air may be), and can also be followed by an exhalation. Scientists have attributed this to one or more causes including sleep deprivation, boredom, anxiety, medication use, a signifier that you are tired or bored as it may have been difficult for you to stay awake while doing something boring. Yawning is natural and occurs in all animals that act sentient. The biggest contributor to the frequency of yawning is when one has not had enough sleep lately; as people can experience yawning from lack of sleep, they can also experience it due to taking certain medications such as sodium oxybate.
Yawning is an instinct that has evolved over the years in different species due to keeping/keeping awake is a sign of strength and mental alertness. It has also been said that yawning is contagious due to other animals feeling it too (but still not being able to figure out why). In this age when we get more and more information about cells, chemicals, and electromagnetic waves than ever before, it can be very intriguing for us to find out about the part of our body that connects us with our inner self.
Why do we yawn at the same time every day as opposed to at different times?
This has not yet been determined by scientists, although some people believe it is due to circadian rhythms (a biological rhythm in living creatures that can be affected by external factors such as light and temperature).
The average yawn lasts around six to eight seconds. Yawning is controlled by your parasympathetic nervous system. When you yawn, it is voluntary and automatic at the same time; if you choose not to yawn, it makes the process more difficult or impossible.
We yawn for the first time at around six months of age. Yawns become more frequent in adults as well, lasting about 7 to 10 seconds.
In humans, yawning can start as early as 20 weeks after conception. It is a reflex that helps control brain temperature and signal fatigue. Heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, and brain activity also all increase as a result.
People seeing someone yawn usually yawn themselves. Why this happens is not yet known.
Reading or thinking about yawning can also cause a person to yawn. Many researchers believe that this happens because people are trying to keep themselves alert and awake.
It is possible for a person to have an ear-to-ear smile while yawning, called a “Duchenne” smile. In this case, only the zygomatic major muscle of the face is activated while the orbicularis oculi muscle remains relaxed.
The average number of times people yawn in one day is seven; though it can be less or more depending on how much sleep you get each night and what time you think you last yawned in such a fashion prior said day.
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