It's a myth that yawning is the body's way of telling us we need more oxygen. Yawning is actually very communicative. Research suggests that yawning is an emotional contagion, and that people yawn more around people they care about most in order to subconsciously show empathy. Seemingly randomly, humans also tend to contagiously yawn less when an ice pack is placed on their head. Other species yawn for different reasons, however. Monkeys and hamsters will yawn to show their teeth as an intimidation strategy. Penguins may yawn to attract a mate. Snakes yawn to realign their jaws after a large meal.
You Probably Yawn The Most Around Your Family
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Key Facts In This Video
Yawning and stretching at the same time is called pandiculation. 00:29
People contagiously yawn less frequently when they have an ice pack on their heads, according to research. 01:51
Some penguins yawn to attract mates. 04:47