A new study from Ohio State University shows a tense marriage can physically harm you. Uh-Oh. As if eating right, exercising and practicing other healthy habits were not enough.
According to CNN, 37 married couples participated in this new study. A device gave each participant eight 8-mm blisters on their forearms. Each couple was videotaped while conversing with their spouse. Researchers evaluated the type of communication between the husband and wife.
After 12 days, researchers found that the blisters on the couples with more positive communication styles healed faster, while the blisters on the couples with negative communication styles healed the slowest. Researchers believe these results are tied to a person's level of oxytocin, a protective hormone.
CNN spoke with Debra Umberson, a sociology professor at the University of Texas. She believes that couples with more marital stress have worse immune function and higher blood pressure and heart rates. She adds that women, in general, show more physical damage from a bad marriage than men. She told CNN, "Marital stress is so pernicious because it's chronic, long-term, and you can't get away from it. You're having these problems day in and day out year after year, decade after decade."
So, the lesson learned here? Work on your marriage! While having a great marriage is not an easy task, it is important. Your emotional health and your physical health depend on it.