Seven Basic Health Benefits of Laughter
Laughter is simply a natural human response to something funny, built into us because the benefits of laughter keep us healthy, mentally and physically. Laughter fosters closeness with other people and nurtures bliss. It has long been recognized as strong tonic for stress and grief and a boost to relaxation and resistance to disease.
Laughter is an amazing blessing, and laughter benefits your soul and your body.
Live by this credo: have a little laugh at life and look around you for happiness instead of sadness. ~ Red Skelton
Laughter can spark physical changes in your body. Chief among others, there are at least seven basic health benefits of laughter. According to the Mayo Clinic, research findings are growing on the short and long term benefits of laughter.1 Here's how:
Short-Term Benefits of Laughter
- Stimulate many organs. Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain.
- Activate and relieve your stress response. A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response and increases your heart rate and blood pressure.
- Soothe tension. Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.
Long-Term Benefits of Laughter
- Improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. In contrast, positive thoughts actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more serious illnesses.
- Relieve pain. Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers. Laughter may also break the pain-spasm cycle common to some muscle disorders.
- Increase personal satisfaction. Laughter can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. It also helps you connect with other people.
- Improve your mood. Many people experience depression, sometimes due to chronic illnesses. Laughter can help lessen your anxiety and depression to make you feel happier.
What Makes You Laugh?
What makes you laugh? Do you gravitate towards people that make you laugh? Does laughter make you feel better?
1. Mayo Clinic, Stress relief from laughter? It's no joke
Savion, S. (2014, August 17). Seven Basic Health Benefits of Laughter, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, October 5 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/livingablissfullife/2014/08/laughtertonic-to-your-body-and-soul
Author: Sydney Savion, D.Ed.
It got me when you said that laughing will make the immune system stronger. As you mentioned, the neuropeptides released due to laughter will be able to fight stress and illnesses. With that in mind, I will be taking my husband to a comedy show to make him better. Lately, he just looks bad because of the stress that he has been in ever since he was promoted to a higher position. It even made him catch colds and cough. This might help him become better.
Totally - I remember checking out "laughter yoga" and thinking it was so dumb, but tried it for a few minutes with a group and actually felt better physically afterward. I can say I haven't tried it since, but your comment and the article overall make me think perhaps I should :) I think your open-mindedness is admirable!
My late father was a funny guy and being part British I just love the kind of satire we have over there!
Even like Jenna Marbles,the You Tube chick,Jimmy Kimmel,Conan OBrien,
I suffer indeed from bipolar disorder plus severe chronic pain...but I still
Have the gift of making others laugh,like ppl in shops...it just pops out!
I do consider it a gift inherited ....but naturally on hold when in a bad depression.
Dad always said laughter is the best medicine,though I still take my medicines!!!
Dad before my brother went to university sometimes after I'd cook ( mum passed early on) as well,sometimes would have fork & spoon fights.
Course Dad started them!
I remember times we'd all laugh so much over silliest things to you guys not fr UK...
Till we were actually bawling!!!
I miss those times now Dad is deceased my lil bro is married living 3 hours away.......
But,I know Dad would want me to keep making others laugh,as he did.
So,to honour his memory... The 4 th anniversary is upcoming of his death soon..
this year I'm going to try & make someone laugh that day,instead of cry over my loss.
As I know this is what he would have wanted....spread the gift of laughter,you'll feel better so will the other person!
What makes me laugh-my husband. We both have a lot humor in us,so we laugh together quite often. I think it benefits us both as he has depression and I have bipolar. Sometimes the blues just take over though, but eventually we find something to laugh about, be it TV, or our pets,our sons, or each other!