Am I the only one who thinks that belly buttons are weird? I mean, they are one of the parts of our bodies where you either have an “innie” or an “outie.” Even though, we know the purpose of them lies back when we where tiny little humans living inside our mother tummies, still that doesn’t stop them looking very odd. Like our toes, some people are actually afraid of them. But what’s even more weird is when someone decided it’s okay to poke your belly button.
You get a funny sensation in your groin that makes you shudder a little which is similar to the feeling of when you need to go to the toilet. And why does that happen? Why is it such a strange feeling for someone to rumble around in your belly? Lucky for us, the answer is just below.
“At the navel, you have the ability to stimulate not only the skin overlying the navel, but also the fibers of the inner lining of your abdomen,” Dr. Christopher Hollingsworth of NYC Surgical Associates said.
“So, as you stick your finger into your belly button, it sends a signal from the deeper fibers that line your inner abdominal cavity to your spinal cord,” Dr. Hollingsworth says. “Because your spinal cord at that level is also relaying signals from your bladder and urethra, it feels almost the same. You interpret this as discomfort in your bladder.”
So when we get this funny sensation when we touch our navel areas, the same thing can’t be related for the surrounding parts of the body. Why?
“You will notice that if you push anywhere around the belly button, it won’t give you the same sensation because you aren’t hitting the deeper fibers behind the muscle layer,” he says. “The internal lining of the abdominal cavity at your umbilicus (belly button) is called your parietal peritoneum. This structure is exquisitely sensitive and its sensory nerve fibers relay input back to the spinal cord at the same level as the nerves that relay sensation from your bladder and urethra.”
So when you are touching inside of your belly button, you are also stimulating the abdominal tissue that is near the part of your spine that tells your brain it’s toilet time.
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