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Cursing Is Useful, We Swear

Here's an excuse to let off some steam.

Ongoing research at Keele U. shows that swearing is an actual f—king emotion—not just an off-color outburst. In the newest findings, subjects who felt riled up after playing a video game cussed more and faster than calmer subjects.“Swearing is an emotion, so it comes more easily— people are ‘better’ at it—when aroused,” says Keele’s Richard Stephens, Ph.D. It can also relieve pain, Stephens says, citing a test in which subjects allowed to swear were able to keep their hands submerged in ice water longer than those who had to watch their mouths. “It starts to explain why we swear,” says Stephens. “It gives us a release.” We can’t wait to tell Mom.

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