Laughter: The Best Medicine for Pain and Stress

laughter

We’ve all experienced it…a moment shared where we laugh so hard our stomach muscles ache. And we’ve all missed it if its been a long time since we’ve had a good gut busting session. The ability to see humor indicates an optimistic outlook, which is so much more…well….fun….than a pessimistic outlook. But is “fun” it? Or is there some science behind humor?

In a 1996 paper “Humor in Medicine,” RC Wender asserts that “Humor helps individuals narrow interpersonal and cultural gaps, communicate difficult messages, express frustration and anger, and cope with anxiety.” But did you know that humor eases pain and relieves stress? Oxford researchers conducted a series of experiments to better understand the effect of laughter on people’s ability to withstand pain. They discovered that authentic, heartfelt laughter causes endorphins to be released, and endorphins, of course are the chemicals that cause us to feel less pain and fewer negative effects of stress.

We’ve talked before about all the ways that stress can be harmful to you. So find a way to find the humor in stressful situations, you just might find they’re a little less painful.

Don’t forget that I also offer massage services to help with stress, chronic pain and more! Give me a call at (518) 744-2315 to schedule an appointment.

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