The Sense of Touch

S. Bensmaia, L. Manfredi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter

6 Scopus citations


Touch begins with the activation of receptors embedded in the skin. Different receptors are sensitive to different aspects of skin stimulation, ranging from pressure and vibration to heating or cooling. Signals from these receptors are then conveyed to and processed in the brain. Signals from the receptors in the skin and their subsequent processing in the brain allow us to perceive the shape of objects, the microgeometry of surfaces (their texture), and motion across the skin, all of which are important in recognizing objects by touch and in manipulating them. Touch also plays an important role in social and emotional communication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Human Behavior
Subtitle of host publicationSecond Edition
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9780123750006
ISBN (Print)9780080961804
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Form
  • Mechanoreceptor
  • Meissner
  • Merkel
  • Motion
  • Pacinian
  • Pleasant touch
  • Somatosensory cortex
  • Tactile acuity
  • Texture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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