In sixth grade I was dying to have my first kiss. No other experience has been as equally exciting and horrifying as the anticipation leading up to that moment. Experiencing that monumental event consumed my thoughts and fed my longing, but all those kissing myths that circled around the lunchroom table sure did inflate my sense of dread. Was I really safe to swap spit with whomever I fancied? Would the encounter mean nothing to the boy with whom I locked lips? And (Please, God, no) would my lack of frenching technique totally expose me as a first timer?
After the awkward first kiss in the back of a movie theatre during a game of Truth or Dare, I continued to gather more knowledge — both true and false — around the mysterious and alluring world of kissing. Without even being fully aware, I had bought into some info about kissing that has turned out to be absolutely wrong. Yet people still perpetuate these myths, sometimes without even realizing they're doing so. But it's time to set the record straight.
The next time you hear someone whisper at the water cooler, "It was just a kiss, it didn't mean anything," you can use your new knowledge to educate them on all nine of these kissing myths.
Myth #1: Only Humans Do It
Humans aren't the only ones who like to smooch on loved ones. According to the website for Animalist, cute little creatures such as squirrels, chimpanzees, and meerkats have all been observed giving kisses.
Myth #2: You Can't Pass Diseases Through Kissing
Swapping spit can involve some serious germs, and you could find yourself at the doctor after a make out sesh. As Very Well pointed out, among other infections, kissing can transfer Hepatitis B, Herpes, and gum disease.
Myth #3: Kissing Is Always In Style
Those who have studied the history of kissing found an interesting fact. After the fall of the Roman Empire, romantic kissing seems to be erased from history for almost 1,000 years, according to Psychology Today. Locking lips made a come back around the time Romeo and Juliet was written. (Thanks Shakespeare.)
Myth #4: The French Invented The 'French Kiss'
Although this is only partly myth, it's definitely worth noting. In France, open-mouthed passionate kisses had no distinguishing name, although sometimes referred to as a Florentine Kiss, as the Associated Press reported. The term "French Kiss," became popular after the World War I, when English speaking soldiers laid eyes on the tongue twisting.
Myth #5: You Need More Than A Kiss To Get Turned On
A kiss, done right, should be all you need to prepare for a romp. According to Women's Health magazine, kissing revs up your body for all the good feeling vibes. By releasing dopamine, increasing your blood flow, and activating your adrenal glands, your body is ready for action in no time.
Myth #6: One Kiss Doesn't Mean Anything
If you thought failed first dates and first kisses were a fluke, think again. It turns out that we swap genetic information when we swap spit, and our primal instincts decide if this person is a good match for us, according to the website for CNN.
Myth #7: A Little Peck Is Useless
You don't need a full on steamy make out to get some benefits of kissing. As Cosmopolitan magazine reported, that people who give and receive more little kisses throughout the week tend to live longer. Another great reason to remember hello and goodbye kisses.
Myth #8: You Learn How To Kiss
To be really good at kissing you'll have to have lots of practice, but the basics are already built into your DNA. According to Women's Health, the vast majority of people tilt their head to the right in order to kiss. This is an action researchers believe originates in the womb.
Myth #9: Everybody's Doing It
Although we may be born with kissing instincts, not all cultures use mouth on mouth kissing to show affection. As Women's Day magazine pointed out, approximately 10 percent of the world do not kiss, rather they use nibbling to licking to express love.