Laughter is the Best Medicine

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Health Tips
Laughter is the best medicine

It’s fun to share a good laugh. Laughter is strong medicine. It strengthens your immune system, boosts mood, diminishes pain, and protects you from the damaging effects of stress. As children, we used to laugh hundreds of times a day, but as adults life tends to be more serious and laughter more infrequent.

Laughter is a powerful antidote to stress, pain, and conflict. Nothing works faster or more dependably to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. Humor lightens your burdens, inspires hopes, connects you to others, and keeps you grounded, focused, and alert. It also helps you to release anger and be more forgiving.

With so much power to heal and renew, the ability to laugh easily and frequently is a tremendous resource for surmounting problems, enhancing your relationships, and supporting both physical and emotional health. Best of all, this priceless medicine is fun, free, and easy to use.

Laughter relaxes the whole body. A good, hearty laugh relieves physical tension and stress, leaving your muscles relaxed for up to 45 minutes after.

Laughter boosts the immune system. Laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease.

Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.

Laughter protects the heart. Laughter improves the function of blood vessels and increases blood flow, which can help protect you against a heart attack and other cardiovascular problems.

Laughter burns calories. OK, so it’s no replacement for going to the gym, but one study found that laughing for 10 to 15 minutes a day can burn about 40 calories—which could be enough to lose three or four pounds over the course of a year.

Laughter lightens anger’s heavy load. Nothing diffuses anger and conflict faster than a shared laugh. Looking at the funny side can put problems into perspective and enable you to move on from confrontations without holding onto bitterness or resentment.

Laughter may even help you to live longer. A study in Norway found that people with a strong sense of humor outlived those who don’t laugh as much. The difference was particularly notable for those battling cancer.

Laughter makes you feel good. And the good feeling that you get when you laugh remains with you even after the laughter subsides. Humor helps you keep a positive, optimistic outlook through difficult situations, disappointments, and loss.

Laughter gives you the courage and strength to find new sources of meaning and hope. Even in the most difficult of times, a laugh–or even simply a smile–can go a long way toward making you feel better. And laughter really is contagious—just hearing laughter primes your brain and readies you to smile and join in the fun.

Laughter stops distressing emotions. You can’t feel anxious, angry, or sad when you’re laughing.

Laughter helps you relax and recharge. It reduces stress and increases energy, enabling you to stay focused and accomplish more.

Laughter shifts perspective, allowing you to see situations in a more realistic, less threatening light. A humorous perspective creates psychological distance, which can help you avoid feeling overwhelmed and diffuse conflict.

Laughter draws you closer to others, which can have a profound effect on all aspects of your mental and emotional health.

Laughter brings people together and strengthens relationships.

Laughter doesn’t come from hearing jokes, but rather simply from spending time with friends and family.

Shared laughter is one of the most effective tools for keeping relationships fresh and exciting. Humor is a powerful and effective way to heal resentments, disagreements, and hurts. Laughter unites people during difficult times.

Humor and playful communication strengthen our relationships by triggering positive feelings and fostering emotional connection. When we laugh with one another, a positive bond is created. This bond acts as a strong buffer against stress, disagreements, and disappointment.

Laughter helps you forget resentments, judgments, criticisms, and doubts.

Laughter is an especially powerful tool for managing conflict and reducing tension when emotions are running high. Whether with romantic partners, friends and family, or co-workers, you can learn to use humor to smooth over disagreements, lower everyone’s stress level, and communicate in a way that builds up your relationships rather than breaking them down.

Physical health benefits of laughter

  • Boosts immunity
  • Lowers stress hormones
  • Decreases pain
  • Relaxes your muscles
  • Prevents heart disease
  • Mental health benefits of laughter
  • Adds joy and zest to life
  • Eases anxiety and tension
  • Relieves stress
  • Improves mood
  • Strengthens resilience
  • Social benefits of laughter
  • Strengthens relationships
  • Attracts others to us
  • Enhances teamwork
  • Helps defuse conflict
  • Promotes group bonding
  • Laughter helps you stay mentally healthy

Bring more laughter into your life

  • Smile
  • Count your blessings
  • When you hear laughter, move toward it
  • Spend time with fun, playful people
  • Bring humor into conversations

Develop your sense of humor :

  • Laugh at yourself. Share your embarrassing moments.
  • Attempt to laugh at situations rather than bemoan them. Look for the humor in a bad situation, and uncover the irony and absurdity of life. When something negative happens, try to find a way to make it a humorous anecdote that will make others laugh.
  • Surround yourself with reminders to lighten up. Keep a toy on your desk or in your car. Put up a funny poster in your office. Choose a computer screensaver that makes you laugh. Frame photos of you and your family or friends having fun.
  • Remember funny things that happen. If something amusing happens or you hear a joke or funny story you really like, write it down or tell it to someone else to help you remember it.
  • Don’t dwell on the negative. Try to avoid negative people and don’t dwell on news stories, entertainment, or conversations that make you sad or unhappy. Many things in life are beyond your control—particularly the behavior of other people. While you might think taking the weight of the world on your shoulders is admirable, in the long run it’s unrealistic and unhealthy.
  • Find your inner child. Pay attention to children and try to emulate them—after all, they are the experts on playing, taking life lightly, and laughing at ordinary things.
  • Deal with stress. Stress can be a major impediment to humor and laughter, so it’s important to get your stress levels in check. One great technique to relieve stress in the moment is to draw upon a favorite memory that always makes you smile—something your kids did, for example, or something funny a friend told you.
  • Don’t go a day without laughing. Think of it like exercise or breakfast and make a conscious effort to find something each day that makes you laugh. Set aside 10 to 15 minutes and do something that amuses you. The more you get used to laughing each day, the less effort you’ll have to make.

Source : https://www.helpguide.org/articles/mental-health/laughter-is-the-best-medicine.htm

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