Why do people yawn?
Why Do People Yawn? — PsyBlog
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** Why Do People Yawn? **
Post image for Why Do People Yawn?
Could yawning be all about cooling down the brain?
Err, don't people yawn because they're bored and/or tired?
Yes, it's true people do yawn more at bedtime or after they've woken up and
they do yawn when they're bored (people even yawn in their sleep).
But yawning isn't that simple. If it was, how could you explain that some
paratroopers yawn before their first jump, as do some violinists before
they go on stage and Olympic athletes before their event (Provine,
2005). These are hardly situations in which people are likely to be bored.
Many people believe that yawning gets more oxygen into the body or expels
more carbon dioxide. But this is not true. The theory is now thought to be
seriously flawed, if not plain wrong.
The truth is no one really knows the real root cause of a yawn. Some good
guesses have been made, though, and it's likely that some combination of
them is true. First let's look at the physiological, before we get onto the
My favourite physiological reason for yawning is that it might help cool
the brain down (Gallup & Gallup, 2007). Our brains work best within a
narrow temperature range and yawning increases blood flow to the brain
which acts like a radiator to move heat away from it.
Oddly this may help explain the paratroopers jumping out of a plane. When
you're about to do something stressful you need your wits about you
Yawn - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
** Yawn **
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"Yawning" redirects here. For the fish species, see Yawning (fish).
A rottweiler yawning.jpg
A rottweiler (King Kong) yawning
Biological system Nervous system
Health Unaffected or Beneficial
Method Complete extension of jaw, inhalation, eyes close, stretching of the
Duration 6 seconds
Joseph Ducreux pandiculating; self-portrait ca. 1783
A *yawn* is a reflex of simultaneous inhalation of air and stretching of
the eardrums, followed by exhalation of breath. *Pandiculation* is the act
of yawning and stretching simultaneously.^
Yawning is commonly associated with tiredness, stress, overwork, lack of
stimulation and boredom, though recent studies show it may be linked to the
cooling of the brain.^ In humans, yawning is often triggered by others
yawning (e.g., seeing a person yawning, talking to someone on the phone who
is yawning) and is a typical example of positive feedback.^ This
"infectious" yawning has also been observed in chimpanzees and dogs.^
Yawn comes from Old English 'Ginian' and 'Gionian' meaning to "Open the
mouth wide, gape," which in turn comes from the Proto-Germanic base *gin-*.
· 1 Proposed causes
· 2 Animal yawning
· 3 Culture
· 4 References
· 5 Further reading
· 6 External links
File:Fetal yawning 4D ultrasound ecografia 4D Dr. Wolfgang
Video of a yawning fetus at 30 weeks of pregnancy ^
There are a number of theories that attempt to explain why animals and
people yawn.^^ It is likely that there are a number of triggers for
the behavior. However, there are a few theories that attempt to explain the
/primary/ evolutionary reason for the yawn
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