Humor is infectious. When laughter is shared, it binds people together and increases happiness. Laughter also causes healthy physical changes in your body. This is particularly important for seniors as well as bedridden or wheelchair-bound people. However, it may be hard to imagine that a good laugh can have health benefits. Research has shown that the effects of a good laugh can boost the immune system, reduce stress and pain, create social relationships, and improve your mood, thereby increasing longevity.
There are numerous benefits of laughter including physical health, mental health, and social benefits. First of all, laughter is known to boost your immune system. It increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies. This improves your resistance to disease. It also increases your oxygen intake, which stimulates your heart, lungs, and muscles, and improves the function of blood vessels, which can help protect against a heart attack and other cardiovascular problems. Equally important, laughter has been known to relieve pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers, endorphins, which promote an overall sense of well-being.
Laughter makes you feel good, and that feeling remains with you even after the laughter subsides. It relaxes your body, relieves tension and stress, generates a positive attitude, and improves your mood. Many seniors may experience depression, fear and anxiety, sometimes due to chronic illnesses. Laughter can help lessen depression and anxiety and make you feel happier. Many have reported moving from fear and anxiety to a more positive state of mind, transforming their quality of life.
Humor lightens your burdens, provides emotional benefits, connects you to others, and makes it easier to cope with difficult situations. Laughter is known for strengthening relationships, enhancing teamwork, promoting group bonding, and helping to diffuse conflict. For residents in assisted living settings, laughing together in a group also helps to boost self-esteem and overcome feelings of insecurity.
Laughter is at the heart of a healthy life. Nothing works faster to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. People who include humor into their daily lives find that it renews their health and adds joy and zest to their lives. Avanti Senior Living offers endless options for exciting resident engagement. From social games to book clubs to fitness routines, Avanti’s fun and innovative programs give their residents the joy and happiness they need and deserve to enhance their lives. Best of all, the priceless medicine of laughter is fun, free, and easy to use!