Monday, April 29, 2013


by M. J. Joachim

We all do it. I’m doing it today more than I want to. Have you ever been way too tired? Is it because the weather is getting hotter outside? (It’s supposed to get up to 102 F here today.) Do you have a minor illness coming on or did you just not get enough sleep last night? Is yawning something we just do, like blinking, flaring our nostrils or tapping our feet?

They say yawning could be contagious. Who am I to argue? It’s not as if I’ve never yawned directly after someone yawned in my presence. Ah, the power of suggestion…and what a powerful thing suggestion is too! Hmmm…not exactly like sharing an illness. One thing is certain. Yawning is not an illness, which indicates the validity of it being contagious is probably not verifiable.

According to Dr.Shmerling, “…it is probably a myth that yawning always indicates a need for sleep.” So why do people yawn? Dr. Komaroff of Harvard Medical School declares the answer plainly enough, “The fact is, we don’t know.”

So there you have it. We all yawn. It’s just something we do. We’re not sick. We’re not tired. Maybe we’re sick and tired. You don’t have to be sick or tired to fall into that category, after all. And we yawn.

Admit it. You started yawning the moment you started reading this blog post, didn’t you? I’m going with power of suggestion on that one. Let’s face it, I’d be a fool not to.

Thank you for visiting Effectively Human.

M. J.

Photo credit:  Young man (morning), Mihály Zichy, Public Domain
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