Laughter: The BEST Medicine

Laughter is an audible expression or the appearance of happiness, or inward feeling of joy. Laughter is found among various animals, as well as in humans. Among the human species, it is a part of human behavior regulated by the brain, helping humans clarify their intentions in social interaction and providing an emotional context to conversation.

Credit: http://peacockandpaisley.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/laughter-group.jpg

There is an article in the Psychosocial Nursing Journal, there is documented and ongoing research in this field of study. This study has led to new and beneficial therapies practiced by doctors, psychiatrists, and other mental health professionals use in laughter to treat a variety of physical and psychological issues. Thus, it goes with the old saying “Laughter is the Best Medicine” or in a Bible Proverb “A Merry Heart Doeth Good Like a Medicine”.

Laughter therapy is the way to help people re-connect with the natural, authentic laughter which is every human being's birthright. All of us were born with the physical and neurological apparatus for laughing, and we will do it without being taught how, starting at about 4 weeks of age under the right conditions. (an explanation of these can be found in Steve Wilson's “Full-Belly Laughter”). The neurologist who made this discovery believe that laughter has survival value.

Laughter is a powerful antidote to stress, pain and conflict. Nothing works faster more dependably to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. A good hearty, laugh relaxes physical tension and stress, leaving your muscles relax up to 45 minutes after.

Laughter decreases stress hormones and increase immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease. It triggers the release of endorphins, the body natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promotes on overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.
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 makes you good, and a good feeling that you get when you laugh remains with you even after the laughter subsides.
Credit: http://www.rd.ca/cms/images/image/LaughterClub_291_20080402-155719.jpg

More than just a respite from sadness and pain, laughter gives you the courage and strength to find new sources of meaning and hope. Even in the most difficult times, a laugh-or even a simple smile- go along way toward making you feel better.

What the Best Medicine laughter can give. Just hearing laughter primes your brain and readies you to smile and join in the fun.

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