The Dark Truth Behind The Time Tickling Was Used As Torture

We've all heard about horrendous torture techniques such as water boarding, stretching of the limbs, and even head crushing. But have you ever thought about the act of tickling as a form of torture? What seems like a harmless activity can actually have severe consequences. Indeed, tickling was used as a form or torture as early as A.D. 206 during the Chinese Han Dynasty (via Cultura Colectiva). Back then, it was a punishment used for criminals as tickling does not leave evidence of torture on the body and the person being tickled recovers quickly as opposed to other forms of torture. When the deed is done, there's no evidence that it even happened.

Similarly, torturing by tickling was also done in ancient Rome, but in that case, criminals' feet were put in a salt mixture, and then they were restrained while goats licked their feet. It may seem like a funny scenario, but it is said to get awfully painful the longer it is done. When a person is tickled, the initial response is to laugh, but the scenario of not being in control of what's happening also brings panic and can be a physically and mentally torturous experience.

Is it possible to die from tickling?

It is often said that laughter is the best medicine, but just like everything, too much laughing can be a bad thing. Per an article from Healthline, it's possible for a person to end up dead by laughing too hard. One of the ways it can happen is when the person being tickled suffers a brain aneurysm, wherein the brain's artery fills up with blood and bursts. In some cases, extreme emotions can result in an asthma attack, which prevents a person from breathing properly.

In regard to torture tickling, there are no records available to point that it led to death. Most probably, people who were tortured by tickling would have fainted before they could have died. However, there are definitely recorded instances of people who have died due to laughter, such as a man from Thailand who succumbed to death after laughing for two minutes straight, and a British man who laughed himself to death while watching "Kung Fu Kapers" back in 1975 (via Thought Catalog).