Ever wonder why you can't tickle yourself? Read this!
You can't tickle yourself because your brain won't let you.
Scientists from University College London in the United Kingdom concluded that when you move, your body sends a message to your brain telling it what to expect. That means your brain already knows the outcome of an action before you ever do it. So you can't tickle yourself because your brain knows what to expect and desensitizes the signal from your skin, reports New Scientist.
They figured this out when they conducted a series of "tit-for-tat" experiments to determine whether we know how much force we use. You know the drill. Go to any playground and eventually two kids will start to argue and hit each other. Then they cry. Then they run to Mom. "He hit me," says one. "He hit me harder," says the other.
The study: Six pairs of adult volunteers took turns squashing their partner's left index finger below a lever that recorded the actual amount of force that was applied. The partners were told to do the same, but they were instructed to use the same amount of force that had been used on them. Back and forth they went.
The results: The volunteers, who had been given the instructions privately and not in front of their partners, each thought the other was told to increase the finger-squashing force--not use an equal amount of force. Our brains are wired to underestimate the amount of force we exert on other people. Translation: He hit me harder.
The study findings, which could provide insight into some self-delusional symptoms of schizophrenia, were published in the journal Science.