Did you know that April 14th was 'unofficially' the International Moment of Laughter day?? I didn't and I'm sorry I missed it, but I've read that some people enjoyed it so much that they've taken it a step further and called this "International Laughter Week". Now I don't know how official this is, but I don't care - 'cause I'm looking around and thinking that we need it more than ever these days! Because ...
When it comes to relieving stress, more giggles and guffaws are just what the doctor ordered and while a good sense of humor can't cure everything, data is growing about the positive things laughter can do. For years now, scientists have been studying brain waves and how they change the disposition in the brain’s happy centers and the benefits of laughter have been proven.
A good laugh has both short and long term effects. When you start to laugh, it doesn't just lighten your load mentally, it actually induces physical changes in your body.
Short Term Effects:
- Laughter stimulates many organs. It enhances our intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates our heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by our brain.
- Laughter activates and relieves our stress response. A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down our stress response, and it can increase our heart rate and blood pressure. The result? A good, relaxed feeling.
- Laughter soothes tension. It can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which can help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress.
Long Term Effects:
- Laughter Improves our immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect our body by bringing more stress into our system and decrease our immunity. In contrast, positive thoughts can actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.
- Laughter relieves pain. It may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers.
- Laughter ncreases personal satisfaction. It can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. As well, It also helps us connect with other people.
- Laughter Improves our mood. Many people experience depression, sometimes due to chronic illnesses. Laughter can help lessen depression and anxiety and may make us feel happier.
Laughter Indeed Is The Best Medicine:
Don't think you're a good laugher? It can be learned by practising - even if it feels forced at first. Turn the corners of your mouth up into a smile and then give a laugh. Once you've had your chuckle, take stock of how you're feeling. Are your muscles a little less tense? Do you feel more relaxed or buoyant? There you go, that's the natural wonder of laughing at work. As they say, practice makes perfect!
Laughter can increase our overall sense of well-being. Doctors have found that people who have a positive outlook on life tend to fight diseases better than people who tend to be more negative. So smile, laugh, and live longer!!!
(Taken from: www.mayoclinic.o