Here's an excerpt from a magazine interview I did on the benefits of kissing.
Does kissing do more than simply lead to sex?
One couple I know has a “10 second” kiss rule. That is when things are getting hectic with kids, career, life, one would say, “ten second kiss”. They would have to drop everything and kiss each other for, well, ten seconds. It was their way of not only finding a bit of couple time in their very hectic schedule, it also shifted their perspective from, possibly snappy with each other, to seeing each other in a loving, fun way. Simply brilliant.
So no, a kiss is not meant, and should never mean “this is the first step to us having sex”. In fact, sadly, too many couples get caught in the trap of, “the only time we kiss is when sex is initiated”. Making women cringe when her partner kisses her—very bad couple dynamic.
How does it make us healthier as a couple?
ANY intimacy outside the bedroom that doesn’t lead to “we must have sex inside the bedroom” is an extremely healthy couple dynamic.
When couples can consciously kiss each other every day with no sex-strings attached, it will make getting in the mood for sex infinitely easier.
How or why does it make us feel less stressed?
Kissing releases oxytocin—men have it too—helping couples feel closer and more intimate. This brain chemical decreases corticosterone and other stress hormones and helps lower blood pressure.
Women’s response to kissing is amplified due to her estrogen (especially when she is ovulating—when she is peaking in her estrogen levels) and are more responsive to the intimate touch (the reason every sex expert preaches, “foreplay, foreplay, foreplay”).
(An orgasm produces a spike and more than two times the normal level of oxytocin, accounting for the calming after sex glow.)
Is there anything unusual about kissing and health that you've come across in your work?
Soon after a relationship is established, people don’t give oral hygiene as much thought as they should. Bad breath being a mitigating factor in why a lot of couples stop kissing.