Professional cuddlers say the benefits are similar to those from massage. They include lowering blood pressure and and heart rate, reducing cravings and addictions and soothing stress, anxiety and depression.
“Touch is one of the great, untapped healing secrets of our society,” says Wayne Jonas, of the Samueli Institute in Alexandria, Va.
Not everyone loves the idea of cuddling with the one you’re with.
“My immediate reaction is that it’s a little bit odd. There’s no certification, and it seems a bit naive, like it could turn into something dangerous,” says Mary Jo Rapini, an intimacy and sex psychotherapist in Houston.