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Tierney Phipps, Reporter

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It starts with quivering lips or maybe blinking faster and faster to keep tears from brimming over. You pinch yourself between your thumb and pointer finger. You know all the tricks. But the tears still fall.

Crying is a natural response humans have to a range of emotions, including sadness, grief, joy, and frustration. Humans are the only mammals to produce emotional tears. They cry in response to emotions, and not just physical pain.  Many people cry in different ways and many cry for many different  reasons.

There are three types of tears: basal, reflex and psychic. Psychic tears are the ones with emotions that protect you and calm you down. During an emotional build-up it is released by the brain, sending your body to a fight or flight mode.

Women tend to cry more than men.  The average woman will  cry 4,680 times over her  adult lifetime. Just a few of the causes are sad TV shows, books, tiredness and arguments with their partners. The average woman will cry six times a month or seventy-two times a year, as men will shed a tear three times a month in comparison.

For men, the longer durations were associated with fear, humiliation, and frustration, for women it was the same except  instead of frustration it was guilt. Happy tears on the other hand tend to be shorter and not last as long.

Mom and business owner Autumn Twitchell said “I cry three or four times a week, if I’m really happy or sad. The last time I cried was three days ago when I watched Inside Out with my daughter and the elephant got thrown in a deep hole in the garbage. When I was younger I didn’t cry when I got mad but now that I’m older I do. After I cry I usually feel mad, but sometimes I feel pretty because my cheeks are red.”

A local high school student says, “I cry at least  two times a week. I mostly cry  because of school. The last time I cried was two days ago. It doesn’t matter who I’m with or where I am at, I will still cry.”

Crying can  relieve stress and lower blood pressure. Over time intense stress and high blood pressure can lead to severe medical problems, and crying helps to mitigate these issues. It’s a way to remove toxins that build up when you’re upset. Certain chemicals and toxins build up in your system when you’re stressed, and crying helps to expel them through tears – especially emotional tears, as opposed to tears formed as a result of irritation.

It boosts your mood immediately afterward. This isn’t just in people’s heads – it’s a scientific fact. When you cry, your level of manganese gets lower. The buildup of manganese leads to stress and anxiety, so crying is nature’s way of easing emotional pain.

Stress and tension  break down the immune system and can lead to illness overtime. So when you cry, when you really cry, you are releasing stress, sadness, anger, and all of the tension.

Crying may seem like a ridiculous thing to some people, but to the person behind the tears there is a valid reason. Or maybe the body just needs to take a breathe and let all the emotions out. Have you ever just had to cry from frustration or guilt? And then after you feel so much better, it’s because you are relieving that stress. It’s kind of like when you are hungry, so you eat and feel better.

Junior  Boston Reynolds says “I cry three to four times a month, I cry for two or three hours each time I cry.”

The average teen only cries for sixteen or thirty minutes. Crying is normal, so if you are stressed and worried maybe just sit down and let the floodgates open.


About the Writer
Tierney Phipps, reporter

Tierney Phipps a Junior at GCDHS highschool. She likes being outdoors, playing sports and hanging out with friends.

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