A Makeout A Day Keeps The Doctor Away? Health Benefits Of Kissing

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KissingPhoto: Cultura/REX USA.
Apparently, Rhett Butler was really ahead of his time when he told Scarlett O'Hara, "You should be kissed and often." Because yes, it's true. A smooch is more than just fun (we're excluding the awkward and, er, bad kisses we've accumulated over the years); it also has some serious emotional and physical health benefits. In a recent post, upwave shared a few of the advantages of kissing — and some might surprise you.

You may know that a kiss can serve as a mini-workout, hormone releaser, and mood-booster, as well as a way to have a cheap thrill or, on the opposite side of the spectrum, connect more deeply with a S.O. But, did you also know it can do wonders for your body, helping to eliminate plaque and fight cavities, reduce pain, and even lower blood pressure?

"Kissing passionately gets your heartbeat revved in a healthy way that helps lower your blood pressure," Andréa Demirjian, author of Kissing: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about One of Life's Sweetest Pleasures told upwave. "It dilates your blood vessels — blood is flowing in a good, solid fashion and getting to all your vital organs."

That same blood vessel dilation is what helps reduce pain from headaches and menstrual cramps. So, even though you may want to curl into a ball when your head is pounding or it's that certain time of the month (when the only thing you really want to touch your lips is a piece of chocolate), a good kiss might do the trick and alleviate some of the discomfort.

Click through to read the other reasons a kiss a day may actually keep the doctor away — as if you ever actually needed a reason to pucker up. Go on, stock up on that lip balm. (CNN)