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The Yawning Mystery

Yawning has been perplexing peoplesince time immemorial. Namely, we all know that we usually yawn whenwe are tired or bored. However, not many of us know why this happens.Rather, there have been many theories about this phenomenon, somemore plausible than the others. Either way, we are still puzzled bythe whole yawning issue, not knowing which theory to believe in. Ifyou belong to the group of people interested in looking further intoyawning, perhaps the following lines will make the whole processunderstandable and logical enough.

The Yawning Speculations

We know that yawning is an involuntaryaction, mostly affecting us when we are bored, sleepy and tired, aswell as in some other, similar situations. Taking into considerationthat our yawning sequence involves rapid inhaling followed byexhaling, there are theories that yawning is connected to oxygen andcarbon dioxide exchange in our organism. Namely, once our oxygenlevels drop, our organism triggers yawning in order to make us intakemore oxygen into the blood stream. However, some scientists claimthat we breathe in much less oxygen while yawning, than we do throughactual breathing, making this theory lack practical reasons.

There are several other beliefs,considering yawning to be a process taking place due to the need forpressure balancing in both of our inner ears. Also, some peoplebelieve that we yawn in order to cool our brain down, since it gotwarmer due to us feeling tired and sleepy.

Furthermore, there are theories thatyawning takes place in order to provide us stretching or clear ourlymphatic systems. Moreover, yawning is thought to be triggered bycertain chemicals in our brain, or be a clear indication of us beinghungry and our glucose levels dropping.

Another interesting theory connects ouryawning to our distant cousins, animals. Namely, some scientistspresume that animals communicate through yawning. They use thecontagious aspect of it in order to transfer information. Forexample, knowing that one animal yawning can trigger the same effectin other animals, they can use this phenomenon as a signal fordanger. Subsequently, our distant evolutionary heritage may includethis aspect as well, explaining the connection between our yawningtriggering other people's yawning etc.

Finally, ancient Greeks and some otherold cultures thought that yawning signifies us being abandoned by oursoul. Thus, all people were advised to keep their hand over the mouthin order to keep the soul inside. However, this was probablyintroduced for hygienic, cultural and aesthetic reasons too.

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