Swearing Research

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Swearing and Stress - Research Papers

Five additional scientific papers on the positive benefits swearing have on stress reduction, emotional expression, and on people with mental health issues include swearing at work-study and exploring the cathartic effect of swear words in coping with driving anger. Other scientific papers are swearing as a response to pain, permissive leadership culture, and expletives as solidarity signals in FTAs on the factory floor. Below is an overview of the findings.

Swearing and Stress - Research Papers

  • Swearing at work-study: This study interviewed 52 lawyers, medical doctors, and business executives in the UK, France, and the USA. The findings were that "swearing can lead to positive outcomes at the individual, interpersonal, and group levels, including stress-relief, communication-enrichment, and socialization-enhancement."
  • Exploring the cathartic effect of swear words in coping with driving anger: This research found that the drivers used swear words in three main situations, namely, actions performed by other drivers, actions performed by pedestrians, and other traffic events. The findings also showed that "swearing is not only an expression of verbal aggression towards another road user but occasionally a way to cope with anger, which leads to better outcomes for the driver such as more positive affect and lower physical activation".
  • Swearing as a response to paineffect of daily swearing frequency: This study shows that "swearing increased pain tolerance and heart rate compared with not swearing. Moreover, the higher the daily swearing frequency, the less was the benefit for pain tolerance when swearing, compared with when not swearing. This study shows apparent habituation related to daily swearing frequency, consistent with our theory that the underlying mechanism by which swearing increases pain tolerance is the provocation of emotional response".
  • Swearing at work and permissive leadership culture: This study was carried out by Yehuda Baruch and Stuart Jenkins in 2006. It could be found that swearing led to stress release and social cohesion, which eventually led to individual and group well-being.
  • The study "Expletives as solidarity signals in FTAs on the factory floor" was carried out by Nicola Daly, Janet Holmes, Jonathan Newton, and Maria Stubbe in New Zealand. They found that "the use of forms of the strong expletives by members of a workplace factory team to express positive politeness in redressing the face threat of complaints and refusals on the factory floor," in other words, they used it to form solidarity and to deal with shared frustrations.
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Swearing and Stress - Articles

Ten credible articles that discuss the benefits of swearing include articles from Psychology Today, Inc, and Time Magazine. The articles discuss the physical, physiological and psychology benefits of swearing, including providing comfort and increasing self-esteem.

Benefits of Swearing

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