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Life has always had the element of stress, no matter which century one was born in. All the prior generations were under no less stress and mental strain than we are today, albeit, for different reasons. This observation is supported by the fact that humor and laughter are as effective today as in the olden days, in momentarily distracting humanity from its troubles and misfortunes.

While there is absolutely no doubt about the fact that laughter makes it easier for us to cope with different challenges in life, it has also been clinically established that it boosts our health by improving blood circulation and strengthening the immune system. This, in turn, helps prevent a number of diseases and provide relief from physical as well as emotional suffering. Laughter therapy can be used to lower the risk of several diseases such as hypertension, ulcers, arthritis, stroke, diabetes, and even heart diseases. It offers good relaxation and helps you relieve stress and depression.
The Many Benefits of Laughing
Laughing is not just related to facial expressions, but it causes a number of chemical changes within the body. Good hearty laughter helps release enzymes and hormones that are helpful for normal functioning of various organs. This is due to a connection between laughing and stimulation of the brain and different glands.
Physical Benefits
Invigorating Immunity
Laughter stimulates the body to release natural antihistamines. It also activates T-cells, a natural antibiotic produced in the body. It helps boost the immune system and fight infections. It prevents numerous diseases by strengthening the immune system. Also, since laughter improves circulation and increases the level of oxygen in blood, the lymphatic system gets a good amount of oxygenated blood when you laugh. This further fortifies your body's immunity against pathogens.
Hormones in Harmony
Laughter reduces the levels of certain hormones, such as cortisol, epinephrine, and dopac, which are associated with stress response. Thus, it helps relieve stress, depression, grief, anger, and irritation. Laughing also decreases pain and reduces anxiety and feelings of depression by releasing endorphins, the feel-good hormones that induce a sense of well-being and positivity. It improves our attentiveness and maintains the optimal pulse and heart rate.
Hindering Hypertension
Laughing is proven to be very beneficial for people affected by hypertension. It helps lower the blood pressure to normal. Laughing causes deeper breathing and improves blood circulation, due to which oxygen and essential nutrients are supplied to all body parts.
Invisible Masseuse
A good laugh works like an internal massage as it gets your insides moving without you even realizing it! Laughter is a good workout for respiratory, abdominal, leg, back, and facial muscles. It tones the intestines, massages abdominal organs, and strengthens abdominal muscles. This activity is advantageous for digestion, as well as absorption of nutrients. Laughter also helps burn calories. A good, forceful laugh vibrates the diaphragm, and the deep breaths let in more oxygen every time.
Sweet Salvation
It has been clinically proven that laughter plays a positive role in keeping blood glucose levels in check. This makes laughter therapy a significant tool in the management of diabetes.
Psychological Benefits
Flushes Out Frustrations
Laughter helps release stress and you just cannot deny the 'light' feeling you get after a good round of laughter. Remember how drained you felt after that colleague of yours told you an outrageously rib-tickling joke? Didn't you feel like you would just burst? Didn't you feel like a weight had been lifted off your chest for quite some time after your laughter subsided? Now, imagine the amount of stress that you'll be purging from your system if you laugh that hard at least 4 times a day.
Invites Positivity
Laughter boosts self-confidence and gives mental strength to cope with conflicts and challenges in life. It also helps us come out of depression. It improves mental health by letting out stress and makes us forget all the tensions in our daily lives, even if just for a few moments. Laughter ushers in a positive frame of mind by making us see the lighter side of life.
Laughing with others help us bond and empathize with each other and this leads to a feeling of belonging and social attachment. This increases self-confidence and enables a person to develop a better self-image. A person with a smiling face is always popular amongst a group. It lessens the distance between two individuals and brings them together. It increases healthy communication with others.
Clarity of Mind
Laughing while undergoing a stressful situation works in a twofold way. On one hand, by lowering the level of stress hormones and regulating your heartbeat, it keeps you physically safe. On the other hand, by allowing your body a good dose of endorphins, laughter tricks you into feeling buoyant and alert, giving your mind the clarity which it can never have, when it is weighed down by distress and desperation.
A mind that has utmost clarity of thought and does not keep wallowing in the murky puddle of negativity is one that is capable of coming up with pragmatic solutions to get rid of a troublesome situation. Ultimately, distracted from the negative emotions and equipped with a clear perspective, you emerge a winner.
A healthy individual with a positive disposition is always welcome, irrespective of whether the occasion is social, personal, or professional. A good sense of humor and an ability to find humor in even the smallest, most mundane aspects of life, raises the approachability quotient of a person by several notches. Such a person makes you feel comfortable even during an apparently awkward conversation. You can easily confide in him, and tell your most embarrassing secrets without worrying about being judged. You know why? Because this is the person who is too busy laughing at himself to even have an inclination to be harsh on you over your 'imperfections'! Laughter positively affects many aspects of our life, including our health, well-being and energy. So always smile - for starters, it does improves your face value, doesn't it?