We know that love can ease our pain, but researchers have now measured the analgesic effect of a romantic partner’s presence. Research published by the Scandinavian Journal of Pain found that the mere presence of a romantic partner can increase pain tolerance levels.
The experiment was conducted in two locations, University of Health Sciences Medical Informatics and Technology, Austria and the University of the Balearic Islands, Spain. The research was based on a sample size of 48 heterosexual couples with an average age of 25.4. For testing sensitivity to pressure pain, participants were first tested on their own and then in the passive presence of their partner.
A device known as a pressure algometer was used to measure pain. To check the participants’ capacity and tolerance towards pain, the researchers increased the level of pain. The participants were later asked to fill a questionnaire on their experience.
The researchers concluded that both men and women show more resilience towards pain when their partner was present in the room. They also found that when a partner exhibited greater empathy, the participant’s pain tolerance level also increased.