Health Benefits of Laughter for Seniors
How Laughter Can Keep You Healthy
Engaging in the act of laughing has the ability to add a little brightness to each and every day. Laughter acts as the physical manifestation of emotions and feelings like happiness, joy, or relief that we all hope will be ever-present throughout the duration of our lives. While many of us often think of laughter simply as a behaviour or reaction that expresses positive feelings, the reality is that the act of laughing is connected to processes within the body that make it capable of improving various elements of overall health, both mental and physical. For seniors, engaging in activities, interactions, and experiences that promote laughter can help facilitate reactions and processes that are hugely beneficial for health and can help seniors manage or combat some of the challenges they face day-to-day.
Laughter is a more powerful thing than simply a fun or enjoyable behaviour. The act of laughing has the ability to yield great benefit to seniors’ mental and physical health.
• Improved Immune System: Laughter can facilitate the reduction of stress hormones while also increasing immune cells and antibodies that help to fight infection.
• Lowered Blood Pressure and Cholesterol: The increase in vascular blood flow that results from laughing, as well as the associated increase in oxygenation of the blood, makes laughter a powerful tool for helping to lower or regulate high blood pressure and, by extension, helping to reduce the risk of heart problems.
• Exercised Diaphragm and Abdominal Muscles: The engagement of these crucial muscles through laughter helps to keep them in shape and working as proficiently as possible.
• Heightened Endorphin Levels: Laughter increases levels of endorphins, which help relieve pain and promote feelings of pleasure.
• Minimized Stress, Depression, and Anxiety: The promotion of an increase in levels of dopamine and other hormones that help to manage stress and anxiety through laughter can be hugely impactful. Also, the feelings of joy that come along with laughter can help to minimize feelings of depression.
• Pain Management: Along with the promotion of endorphins, referred to as the body’s natural painkillers, laughter is also a competent tool for distraction, and laughing can often help to redirect attention away from pain, thereby minimizing its effects.
Add Some Laughter
Laughter improves overall health
While the idea that laughter will remain a constant part of day-to-day life is a hope that we all hold on to, the reality for a large number of seniors is that laughter is often a less frequent visitor as conditions change and seniors grow more isolated from people and activities that once brought them happiness and laughter. Residing at home alone and dealing with numerous challenges that come along with age can increase the difficulty of connecting with reasons to laugh, so it is imperative that opportunities be created that help to introduce a little laughter into each day. Making sure that seniors spend enough time with friends and companions, participate in activities that they find enjoyable, and interact with things like movies, TV, and books that make them laugh can make a notable impact on supporting overall health and wellbeing for seniors in Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge.
Contact us today for a Free Consultation to discuss how Home Care can inject some fun and laughter into your daily routine.