Surprising Health Benefits of Laughter and How It May Help When Dealing With a Difficult Diagnosis

happy senior woman laughing

Even when life is difficult, find something that makes you laugh.

Have you ever felt yourself about to bubble over with irrepressible laughter, at the most inopportune moment in time – in a packed elevator, a quiet waiting room, or a religious service? Even though there are, certainly, times when we need to stamp down the silliness, author Jane Heller explains that, “Humor can keep us balanced, even in the grimmest of times. It reminds us that despite illness and disability, there are moments of real joy in life and we need to embrace them.”

The health benefits of laughter are remarkable, including:

  • Releasing endorphins that minimize tension
  • Enhancing brain connectivity
  • Supplying a social boost
  • Relieving pain
  • Enhancing the immune system
  • Boosting mood
  • Safeguarding the heart from coronary disease
  • Revitalizing circulation and muscle relaxation, each of which alleviate stress
  • And much more

Despite the fact that there’s nothing funny when it comes to receiving a difficult medical diagnosis for a loved one, there are ways to maintain an underlying feeling of positivity that might lead to additional possibilities for laughter:

  • Be deliberate about adding snippets of humor throughout your home/office, which can include a well-liked comic strip, meme, funny photographs, etc.
  • Look into a laughter yoga class – yes, there truly is such a thing!
  • Adjust your reading material and TV viewing to incorporate additional lightheartedness. Include joke books – or explore the internet for new jokes to be included in your repertoire.
  • Enjoy time with friends and family who lift your spirits. Remember prior memories together that make you laugh, and create new ones!
  • Don’t forget to laugh at yourself, instead of being hard on yourself for errors, try acknowledging that you’re only human.

Surprisingly, even if you don’t feel like laughing, positive aspects can still be achieved through faking or forcing laughter, according to certified health coach Nancy Kalish.

Generations at Home’s caregivers help bring happiness and laughter to older adults and respite for their families on a daily basis. Our friendly senior companions spend quality time with older adults, engaging in conversations, games, puzzles, exercise, fun outings, not to mention a great deal of laughter. And with our full range of in-home care services, such as meal preparation, household chores, and looking after personal care needs, family care providers and the seniors they love are able to spend more quality time simply taking pleasure in each other’s company. Allow us to help brighten your world! Call us at 727-940-3414 any time to find out more and to arrange for an in-home consultation.