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A Ticklish Subject

Tickling yourself comes as no surprise

(HealthDayNews) -- Ever wonder why, if you're susceptible to tickling, you can't tickle yourself?

Because your brain consciously interferes with the body's automatic response to surprise.

A tickle stimulates the nerve endings located in your skin. And like any touch of the skin, the tickle is interpreted by the brain as an outside attack on the body. That's why you almost involuntarily swat a mosquito or jump when an unseen tree branch brushes across your cheek.

In the case of tickling yourself, you can't overcome the conscious recognition that you're not being attacked, says Jeanne K. Hanson, author of "Your Amazing Body, from Headaches to Sweaty Feet and Everything in Between."

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