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Why is it impossible to tickler yourself?

I just noticed that I can't tickle myself. I'm doing the same thing my friend does to tickle me, but it doesn't tickle when I do it.

3836 day(s) ago

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Almost everyone can be tickled in some spot of our bodies. Some of us like to be tickled, but most of us hate it. It causes a temporary loss of control that we can do nothing to stop. Many of us, at one time or another, have tried tickling ourselves. We quickly come to find that itís not so easy. In fact, it is just about impossible. The reason for this is because our ability to be tickled largely depends on the element of surprise. Even though we can see another person about to tickle us, our brain cannot determine the exact spot and the precise time that the touch will make contact. In addition to the unknown time and place of contact, our brain is also affected by sensation of fright that we may be in danger. Paradoxically, this feeling of fright makes us respond by laughing. Some people are so sensitive to tickling, that they donít even need to be touched. They begin feeling tickled and laughing merely in anticipation of being tickled.

It is impossible to tickle ourselves because our brain largely knows the exact time and place our body will make contact with itself. This is because we are explicitly thinking about the movement. Our brain is also not affected by the fear that we will hurt ourselves with our own touch. In some cases, it may be possible to accidentally tickle ourselves if we are engaged in another activity because our brain is busy thinking about what we are doing. An accidental touch may not register as coming from us. Scientists say the part of the brain responsible for not being able to tickle ourselves is the cerebellum. The cerebellum is filters sensations and ranks them according to how likely they are to cause harm.

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