A sigh is defined as a kind of paralinguistic respiration in the form of a deep, audible, single exhalation of air out of the mouth or nose.
Sighing may have purely physiological triggers (see: Respiratory variability preceding and following sighs: A resetter hypothesis [ paywalled ] in: Biological Psychology, Volume 84, Issue 1, Pages 82-87), or may arise from negative emotion, i.e. from feelings such as dismay, dissatisfaction, boredom, or futility.
According to a 2014 studyin the Psychophysiology journal :
âHow dimensions of emotion affect respiratory regulation assessed by respiratory variability and sighing is unknown.â
There are also theories that sighs could be functioning as signals to convey emotional states to others :
[they are] often unintentional expressions of an activity, plan or desire that has to be discarded, creating a pause before it can be replaced by a novel initiative.â
Source : Scandinavian Journal of Psychology (paywalled)
[â¦] in contrast to largely involuntary respiratory acts like yawning or sneezing, sighing is wholly manipulable, which suggests that its occurrence in interaction may be purposeful.â
Source : Berkeley Linguistics Society Journal, 29
Further extensive technical information The integrative role of the sigh in psychology, physiology, pathology, and neurobiology Progress in brain research. 2014;209:91-129.
Also see :and
Ideas for new topics, and suggested additions / corrections for older ones, are always welcome.
If you have skills or interests in a particular field, and have suggestions for Wikenigma, get in touch !
Or, if you'd like to become a regular contributor . . . request a login password. Registered users can edit the entire content of the site, and also create new pages.
( The 'Notes for contributors' section in the main menu has further information and guidelines etc.)
You are currently viewing an auto-translated version of Wikenigma
Please be aware that no automatic translation engines are 100% accurate, and so the auto-translated content will very probably feature errors and omissions.
Nevertheless, Wikenigma hopes that the translated content will help to attract a wider global audience.