Science Answers Embarrassing Questions



People once believed if you peed in the pool that it would create a toxic chemical called cyanogen chloride, which is similar to tear gas and everyone in the pool would know exactly what you’d done. The amount of chlorine needed for this reaction would probably take the skin off your bones, so  you can pee in the pool. Still, we’re not saying that you should, just that it’s safe.


Brushing may clean your teeth but it only masks bad breath because the problem really lies within your throat and tongue. When the bacteria in your mouth lose access to oxygen (which can happen when you use alcohol-based mouthwashes, take certain prescription medications or just sit with your mouth shut for a long time), they emit sulfur compounds that smell like death. You can neutralize them by drinking water throughout the day and eating oxygen-rich vegetables, such as parsley and celery.


There’s the odd occasion when holding in your gas is the best way to avoid embarrassment or grossing your date out, but can it do damage to you? Holding in a fart can cause bloating but worst of all it can cause hemorrhoids or even a distended bowel. Don’t panic though, you’ll release the gas as soon as you go to sleep before any of these things occur.


A trigger in your brain causes you to throw up because it thinks it’s being poisoned. When you throw up there are three main reasons why: irritation of your brain, irritation of your stomach, or irritation of your hormones. Your brain gets irritated when the fluid in your brain and your inner ears are different and might eject your stomach’s contents.


Hair actually has no colour at all. Hair colour depends on pigment secretion and this is why it may alter over time. As your body grows older it slowly stops producing the pigment and the hair returns to its natural state. For some this happens sooner than others.


All warts are infections caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). There are over 100 varieties of HPV, from the highly contagious kind that causes genital warts, to the much less contagious kind that causes common warts on the hands and fingers. When this irritating virus invades this outer layer of our skin, usually through a cut or scratch, it causes rapid growth of cells on the outer layer of skin – which is what we call a wart.


The simple answer is because you got drunk. The science is that when you drink booze it makes you wee more and in turn dehydrates you. To add to that alcohol slows down the rate that the stomach empties itself and increases production of stomach acids, which can lead to nausea. Drinking also causes blood vessels to dilate producing that pounding headache. Yet we still do it.


Morning glory is scientifically known as nocturnal penile tumescence. It serves to stretch out the two sponge-like areas that cause erections. For healthy guys it is normal to have this happen 3-5 times a night.


Your two nostrils are a team, they work in conjunction to help you breathe but they split the workload. This means that even when you’re not sick, one nostril is contributing more than the other. Your autonomic nervous system, which takes care of things you don’t consciously control, switches this for you.


It can be one of two things: emotional stress or your body trying to regulate its temperature. When you get nervous, scared, or excited your sympathetic nervous system will stimulate Eccrine glands on your face, palms, armpits, and more.  


Does your morning coffee coincide with your morning poop? This happens because coffee stimulates muscle contractions in your large intestine and before you know it…


In our first few weeks in the womb the embryo starts as a woman and follows that path until testosterone plays its part in males and changes the genetic activity of cells in the genitals and brain. The nipples are there for good after that. So, we all have nipples because we were all female once.


Blame that goddamn brain of yours. According to Slate: “Under stressful conditions…the inhibitory signals from the frontal lobe [aka what keeps us from peeing as soon as our bladder is full] can themselves be overridden by the limbic system, a combination of brain areas that controls the famous ‘fight or flight’ response. When we become stressed or anxious, electrical signals from the limbic system become so intense that the brainstem has trouble following the frontal lobe’s commands. That’s why many people urinate more frequently before important exams or in the starting corral of a marathon.”

H/T: The Chive, Distractify

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