Apparently, you know just as much as anyone else about the pleasurable, relaxed tingling sensation on the back of your head and neck. Although this sensation is experienced by most everyone at some time, medical science has yet to tackle the issue. Here that, all you grad students? If you have yet to pick a topic for your doctoral thesis, here is one ripe for investigating.
Although no one knows for sure what causes such a sensation, a few educated guesses have been made throughout the years. Personally, I believe it is related to a condition discussed elsewhere on this website, post-micturition convulsion syndrome, otherwise known as the pee shakes or the piss shivers. (http://www.strangequestions.com/question/178/Why-do-I-shiver-after-I-pee.html)
It seems that your spine-tingling sensation is closely related to several other phenomena, including the pee shakes, frightful spine-tingling and even goose bumps. All of these bodily conditions are caused by the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous system is the part of the nervous that we cannot control with our thoughts. This part of the nervous system is also known as the autonomic nervous system because the parts of the body under its control work automatically.
When you mention endorphins, you are most likely exactly right. Endorphins are opiate-like chemicals produced by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus in the brain. They are produced by the autonomic nervous system as a response to physical activity or strong emotions, such as exercising, pain, stress, excitement, love and relaxation. Endorphins produce a euphoric feeling or a feeling of well-being. They act on the brain and the spinal cord.
Since endorphins affect the nerves, they may cause them to respond in a manner that is unusual, thus the tingling sensation. Another theory states that the endorphins affect the body’s internal temperature control system. The body thinks it is suddenly cold and a tingling or shiver can occur in response.
I know this doesn’t really clear up the matter, but really, this is one of those things that no one scientifically understands.
Posted 597 day ago