Aprende inglés: ¿por qué sentimos cosquillas?

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En esta nueva serie, los periodistas de la BBC te ayudan a practicar inglés con una noticia de la semana. Mira el video y aprende nuevo vocabulario.


Why are we ticklish?

Aprende palabras relacionadas con:

the body’s reactions


tickling sensation – tingling feeling on or under your skin

nerve endings – points on nerves that send messages to your brain

electrical signals – messages nerves send to the brain

defence mechanism – reaction from the body to protect itself from danger

Responde a esto:

Why isn’t being tickled always enjoyable?

Transcripción en inglés:

Professor Sukhi Shergill, Psychiatry and Systems Neuroscience, King’s College London

Tickling: love it, or hate it? Or even a bit of both… It’s a strange phenomenon.

There are two types of tickling sensation. Knismesis – a mildly annoying feeling caused by light movement like this. And there’s gargalesis – which is caused by a deeper pressure on your skin.

When your skin is touched, the nerve endings underneath send electrical signals to the brain. We laugh when we’re tickled because the sensation is picked up in two areas of the brain at once – the part which analyses touch, but also the part that creates pleasure.

But of course, being tickled isn’t always enjoyable.

In fact, it also affects the part of the brain that makes you feel panic in the face of danger.

So, strange as it may seem, laughing when you’re tickled could be a sort of primitive defence mechanism – giving a signal to show our submission to a predator.

So, why can’t we tickle ourselves? We think it’s to do with the brain’s cerebellum that monitors our movement. It can tell the difference between expected and unexpected sensations. In other words, it already knows what you’re doing and is too clever to react.

¿Lo entendiste?

Why isn’t being tickled always enjoyable?

Because it affects two parts of the brain, including one that makes us feel panic.

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