Touch Facts

  • Touch, or physical contact, is one of five sensations that are spread all over your body in your skin. The others are pressure, pain, heat and cold.
  • There are sense receptors everywhere in your skin, but places like your face have more than your back.
  • There are 200,000 hot and cold receptors in your skin, plus 500,000 touch and pressure receptors, and nearly 3 million pain receptors.
  • Free nerve-endings are rather like the bare end of a wire. They respond to all five kinds of skin sensation and are almost everywhere in your skin.
  • There are specialized receptors in certain places, each named after their discoverer.
  • Pacini’s corpuscles and Meissner’s endings react instantly to sudden pressure.
  • Krause’s bulbs, Merkel’s discs and Ruffini’s endings respond to steady pressure.
  • Krause’s bulbs are also sensitive to cold.
  • Ruffini’s endings also react to changes in temperature.