Is Laughter Really The Best Medicine?
Table of Contents
Science defines laughter as ““successive, rhythmic, spasmodic expiration with open glottis and vibration of the vocal cords, often accompanied by baring of the teeth and facial expression.”
While the definition of laughter sounds very difficult, laughter is indeed one of the easiest things to do. One good laugh is all it takes to forget your worries for a while because it is very difficult to laugh and frown at the same time and yet if someone, somehow manages to do it, I can assure you that they will look really funny doing it and it will eventually end in laughter.
In addition to forgetting your worries for a while, laughing has a couple of benefits for our health as well. This is what research suggests:
Dr. Gulshan Sethi, head of cardiothoracic surgery at the Tucson Medical Center says, “Laughter activates the body’s natural relaxation response. It’s like internal jogging, providing a good massage to all internal organs while also toning abdominal muscles.”
**Research suggests that laughter acts on the endothelium, which is the inner lining of the blood vessels causing them to relax and expand which in turn increases the blood flow. Increased blood flow is beneficial to the heart and the brain. **
**Michael Miller, M.D., of the University of Maryland, found in a study of 20 people that laughter had the same positive effects on the arteries as aerobic exercise. **
Why should we laugh?
Laughter eases our body: Our body is filled with physical tension and stress and a good laughing session can be great to release that. It eases the pressure and the stress on the muscles in the body and at the same time boosts the energy levels in the body for approximately an hour.
Laughter increases immunity: According to a study done at Indiana State School of Nursing, laughter can kill cancer cells. This is because laughter increases the number of natural killer cells ( a type of white blood cells) that kills cancer in the body. It is also known to boost immunity in general.
Laughter releases endorphins: Endorphins are the body’s natural feel-good chemicals and laughter releases endorphins in excess. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and also reduces the levels of distress and pain in the body temporarily.
Laughter eliminates negativity: Laughter is the key to optimism. Laughing at or during negative situations help us perceive them in a more optimistic and realistic way. While laughing, one cannot feel anxious or angry. This is the reason why depressed people are suggested to watch comedy movies.
Laughter promotes mutual relationship: Research suggests that people who laugh together are closer as compared to those who don’t. Also, people who laugh together in their first meeting hit it off almost instantly. Mutual laughter brings joy and happiness in a relationship and improves the quality of relationships.
**Laughter relieves pain: **In this context, laughter does not literally reduce the pain but helps us cope with the pain. It helps us to temporarily escape the discomfort and stress that comes along with a painful situation. Laughter gives us the hope that we can overcome the stressful situation.
**Let me conclude with the biggest joke of the century. **
**‘Mobiles and computers were invented to save our time.’ **
Even if you didn’t laugh at this one, don’t forget to laugh every day because **laughter is indeed the best medicine but you don’t get them at chemists. **
Okay! I’m done.
**Keep laughing! **