Hearing a deep-rooted belly laugh is like music to your ears. It expresses the person’s sheer joy and happiness, and you can’t help but laugh along with them.
Ever wondered why laughter is said to be the best medicine? Here are a few reasons.
Helps Alleviate Symptoms of Depression
While depression is a mental disorder that needs to be treated with psychotherapy and medication, laughter can help improve depressed moods.
In one 2017 study, the effects of laughter therapy were observed on a group of patients in long-term care hospitals. During the eight therapy sessions that took place, patients with depressive symptoms were asked to partake in several activities. These included healthy clapping, stretching, laughing exercises, singing funny songs, and laughing out loud. The results saw an improvement in their moods.
Similarly, another study published in 2015 also looked at the effect of hour-long laughter therapy sessions on cancer patients. It was found that the sessions had a significant improvement in the patients’ depressive symptoms and negative mood states.
Serves As an Internal Workout
Did you know laughter can help your physical health too? A good old belly laugh involves the muscles in your diaphragm, shoulders, and abs, giving them the exercise they need to stay healthy.
In addition to this, laughing also helps you breathe better. Deep belly laughter improves your respiratory rate and increases the rate of oxygen consumption. This is similar to the effects of exercise, which also improve your breathing rate.
What’s more, laughter doubles as a cardio workout as well! In one study, it was found that participants who watched a comedy show had a 22% increase in their flow-mediated vasodilation. This contributed to an improved heart rate.
Brings People Together
You know how they say laughter is contagious? They’re absolutely right!
Laughter attracts people to each other and helps them connect over humorous situations. It not just impacts your own physical and psychological health, but also lifts the mood of people around you. Sharing a laugh with a group of friends or even strangers can improve how you experience social interactions, and bring people together.
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