000002_en_GL_NIV_Purpose_11_2020_Digital_LP_StoryStage_Twins_2560_1298

Touch saved my life

Discover their story

The power of human touch in photos

Discover his story

CARE FOR HUMAN TOUCH TO INSPIRE TOGETHERNESS

These days, the pace of everyday life, more virtual connections, and the coronavirus pandemic are getting in the way of human touch and making us feel lonely and isolated. With this #CareForHumanTouch initiative, we want to raise awareness and inspire everyone to include more human touch in everyday life! That’s why NIVEA supports skin-touch projects that improve the quality of life for people at risk of loneliness.

EFFECTS OF TOUCH

What Happens to Our bodies When We Are Touched?


1

Heart rate is calmed and blood pressure normalizes


2

Symptoms of anxiety or depression are reduced


3

The level of stress hormones decreases


4

Level of feel-good hormones increases and the immune system is strengthened

“This is a traumatic time and the virus is not a game. We will still get back to physical touch once we can, because connecting through touch is in our nature.”

Prof. Dr. Tzipi Strauss

Specialist in pediatrics and neonatology

The Power of Touch Is Scientifically Proven

Touch Helps Ease Dementia-Related Agitation

The result of 163 studies involving nearly 25,000 patients is that multidisciplinary care, massage, and touch therapy were more effective than treating patients with traditional antipsychotic drugs.

Skin-To-Skin Touch Helps Premature Babies Thrive

The study offers added evidence that if a premature baby is medically stable, the age-old practice of holding the tiny child – skin to skin, heartbeat to heartbeat – might well do some good. As a survey of more than 100 previous studies, it found that overall, the skin-to-skin cradling widely known as “kangaroo mother care” may cut a premature, low-birth-weight baby’s risk of death by 36 percent.

Loneliness Study

A study of older Britons found that loneliness was twice as unhealthy as obesity, and that lonely people aged 50 and older were twice as likely to die as their nonlonely peers. Given their increased risk for both loneliness as well as age-related health problems, older people need more touch – not less.

Touch in Sports

A US ethological study coded the touch behavior of players from the National Basketball Association (NBA) during the 2008–2009 season. Consistent with hypotheses, early-season touch predicted greater performance for both individuals and teams later in the season.

Be Inspired

There are many ways to add more human touch to your world. Why not start today with one of them?

Global Report

The State of Human Touch

Every year, NIVEA conducts a worldwide survey with over 11,000 people. One impressive finding: Many people experience hardly any physical touch. And the Covid-19 pandemic has made this worse.

Global rates of approval:
“No physical contact at all the day before the interview.“
[{"X":"1025","Y":"157","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e27% did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eCompared to the previous year, this figure has fallen by one percentage point. Seemingly, many people in Germany have not experienced any changes since the Covid-19 restrictions in regard to physical touch. One reason for this could be that people stayed home more with their family and friends.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e60% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds to the overall worldwide average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e44% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% of all respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In Germany, only 44% of respondents agreed with this statement.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"682","Y":"195","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e26% did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eCompared to the previous year, this figure has fallen by three percentage points. One reason for this could be that people in the UK stayed more at home with their family and friends.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e63% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is slightly higher than the global average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e60% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds exactly to the global average of people who experienced that helping others reduces the feeling of loneliness.\u003c/p\u003e\n","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"764","Y":"473","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e21% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThese numbers haven’t changed since the previous year. It seems that social distancing measures have not led to a decrease of physical touch. One reason could be that people stayed more at home with their family.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e59% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is only slightly less than the average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e59% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds approximately to the global average of 60%.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"540","Y":"663","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e21% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIt seems that social distancing measures have deeply affected people in Brazil. The number has increased from 12% to 21% within one year.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e78% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis number is far higher than the global average. It seems that the people in Brazil miss physical touch more than the respondents in other countries.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e88% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% of all respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In Brazil, the number was far higher: 88% of respondents agreed with the statement that helping others reduces the feeling of loneliness.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"930","Y":"331","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e26% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThese numbers are in line with the global average of 26%. But in comparison to last year, this number has increased from 7% to 26%. It seems that, for many people, social distancing measures in Italy have increased the lack of physical touch.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e71% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003ePeople in Italy seem to miss physical touch more than people in other countries.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e64% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In Italy, 64% of the respondents agreed with this statement.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"1003","Y":"711","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e25% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is close to the global average of 26%. Compared to the previous year, however, this number has risen sharply from 16% to 25%. It seems that people in South Africa have experienced less physical touch due to social distancing measures.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e61% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis number corresponds exactly with the global average.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e67% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In South Africa, 67% of the respondents agreed with this statement. \u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"402","Y":"341","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e26% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is close to the global average of 26%. Compared to the previous year, however, this number has risen by 5 percentage points. It seems that people in the US have experienced less physical touch due to social distancing measures.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e60% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds approximately to the global average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e63% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% of all respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In the US, 63% of respondents agreed with this statement.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"1375","Y":"415","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e36% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is much higher than the global average and the highest global rate in our survey. This corresponds to the very high acceptance of COVID restrictions in South Corea.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e36% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eInterestingly, this is far less than the average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e39% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eOverall, 60% of all respondents worldwide said that helping others had made them feel less lonely. In South Korea, only 39% of respondents agreed with this statement.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"1404","Y":"715","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e30% Did Not Experience Physical Touch the Day Before the Interview\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis is higher than the global average of 26%. Compared to the previous year, this figure has actually risen by four percentage points. It seems that people in Australia have experienced less physical touch due to social distancing measures.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e62% would like to be hugged more\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds approximately to the global average of 61%.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003e60% felt less lonely by actively helping others\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis corresponds exactly to the global average of people feeling less lonely when helping others.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]}]
“Two friends in a café. Number of touches in England: zero. In the USA: two times. In Puerto Rico: 180 times.”

Sidney M. Jourard

Psychologist

Nonverbal Communication

The International Language of Touch

Of course, being touched by people with friendly intent can be either a pleasant or invasive experience. And although touch is a universal language and the first that we learn, there are some differences around the globe. For example, the following:
[{"X":"1230","Y":"705","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Europe, North and South America, Handshakes Are Common Greeting Rituals\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThey are performed between young and old, man and woman, superiors and employees.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Arab Countries, the Hierarchy between People is Central to the Greeting\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eBetween men, a light (!) handshake with eye contact is a common greeting ritual. In a room with several people, first the host, then the eldest, and then all other people are welcomed.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn many Asian countries, Bowing is Common as a Gesture of Greeting\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThe Japanese handshake, for example, is traditionally limp, accompanied with a slight bow as a sign of respect and little or no eye contact.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eA Handshake in Africa Should Be Firm and Is Often Prolonged\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Namibia, thumbs are locked in the middle of the handshake. In Liberia, people slap hands and then execute a complex finger snap. In eastern and South Africa, holding your right elbow with your left hand during the handshake is a sign of respect.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"890","Y":"715","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Europe, North and South America, Handshakes Are Common Greeting Rituals – Also between Men and Women\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn some countries such as Italy or Russia, a man waits for the woman to shake hands first to greet them.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Arab Countries, Women Are Either Not Welcomed or Only Very Subtly\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eA nod of the head is sufficient as a greeting. Here, too, the rule is: as a man, you wait until the lady shakes your hand, then you too may shake her hand. However, a handshake is quite okay among women.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eShaking Hands as a Greeting is Rather Unusual in Asia – Instead You Bow to Each Other\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThe greeting order in Asia always results from the ranking. This means that the highest and oldest are greeted first, followed by those who are socially equal. Gender does not play a role.\u003c/p\u003e\n\n\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThe Most Common Greeting Ritual on the African Continent is Also the Handshake\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThis should be firm and you should look the other person in the eyes. In some parts of Africa, physical contact between women and men is unusual.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"843","Y":"288","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThe Cheek Kiss Is Found in Numerous Variations, especially in Europe as well as in Central and South America\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eThe number of kisses varies from country to country. In Austria, a kiss on each cheek is common, in Switzerland and France it\u0026rsquo;s already three kisses. In Belgium, however, only one kiss is common, and in Argentina an astounding four kisses are given.\u003c/p\u003e\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Arab Countries, Cheek Kisses Are Common between People of the Same Gender\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eWomen in Sudan, for example, may give three kisses on alternating cheeks when greeting other women. \u003cbr /\u003e\nIn Syria, informal greetings between people of the same gender may involve a hug or two kisses on each cheek.\u003c/p\u003e\n\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Asia, Cheek Kisses Are Not Appropriate\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eIn Thailand, for example, the head is the highest part of the body and, for Thai people, the seat of the soul \u0026ndash; so you must never touch the head of a person, not even with small children.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]},{"X":"1193","Y":"291","Color":null,"HotspotDetail":[{"Type":"HotspotText","Title":"","Copy":"\u003ch3 style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eHugging Is Generally More Common between Friends\u003c/h3\u003e\n\u003cp style=\"text-align:left;\"\u003eAlthough hugging does vary across cultures and is more or less common in some places. Gender rules may also apply – for example, hugging in America is far more common among women than men. Harassment laws may also limit touching of the other person in what may be interpreted as an intimate way.\u003c/p\u003e","Link":{"Title":"","Url":""},"Button":null}]}]

CURRENT TOPICS

THE LONELINESS EPIDEMIC

Millennials are most connected – and lonely.
But there is a way out! Interview with Derrick Feldmann about loneliness, where it comes from and how we can help to prevent it.

DID YOU KNOW ...

says that physical touch is not a daily occurance in their life

miss touch very much and want to make up for it after the crisis

realised during isolation how important physical touch is for their health

feel lonely when lacking human touch

say that the isolation has made them feel lonelier than ever before

say that lack of human touch makes them feel lonely even if they have many contacts on social networks