Ever wonder why you feel good after a good laugh? Why watching a comedy film with your family and laughing together instantly improve your mood?

It’s because laughter is the best medicine. It’s not just a figure of speech; laughter has been proven to be beneficial for a person’s emotional and mental well-being.

Laughter therapy is used in the mental health community to release major negative feelings: anger, anxiety, and boredom. It is a type of therapy that uses humor to reduce stress, relieve pain, and improve a person’s overall wellness. If you want to know more about the benefits of laughter therapy and learn how to laugh often, read further. 

The Benefits of Laughter Therapy on Mental and Physical Health

Laughter may only be the medicine with no side effects and is free. One study revealed that an adult laughs at least 17 times a day, while a child laughs 300 times daily. No wonder we always say, “I want to be a kid again,”because being a kid again means having a stress-free life and enjoying simpler, happier times once more.

You won’t be able to turn back the clock, but you can definitely start laughing like a kid again, no matter what your current age is. Learning the mental and physical health benefits of laughter therapy just might motivate you to start laughing like your much younger self once more. 

1. Laughter Makes You Happy

You feel joy and happiness each time you laugh. Laugh every day and you’ll be in a constant state of positivity.

During a burst of hearty laughter, the body releases endorphins, feel-good chemicals that make you happy and clear-headed when dealing with problems. Laughter therapy is a great way of getting in touch with your inner feelings and taking control of your emotions, even in difficult situations.

2. Laughter Brings People Together

Sharing laughter with your friends and family can bring you closer together. Shared laughter has been seen to improve relationships with friends, co-workers, family members, and intimate partners. Did you notice that couples who laugh together share a strong and exciting bond?

Laughter is also a powerful tool for families in dealing with disagreements, healing resentments, and bringing joy to each family member. For instance, families that laugh together at dinner or do fun activities together tend to have a stronger bond since there is openness. Each family member will look forward to every family gathering because of the fun times and the laughter.

3. Laughter Is Good for Physical Health

Have you noticed that after a good laugh, your body feels relaxed? Hearty laughter can relieve stress and physical tension that leave the muscles relaxed for 45 minutes after laughing. Laughter can also decrease the body’s stress hormone levels, which stimulates the body to produce immune cells and antibodies that fight infection.

In short, laughter can also boost your immune system and build up your body’s resistance to illness. One study shows that laughter therapy can help improve the quality of life in cancer patients.

4. Laughter Can Help You Live Longer

Laughter can protect your heart by improving blood vessel function and promoting regular blood flow. This helps regulate normal blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular diseases like heart attack. A healthy heart and a strong immune system—two benefits you get from laughing—increase your shot at longevity.

According to one study, people who have a sense of humor and laugh all the time live longer than those who don’t. Consider laughter as an exercise for the heart, mind, and overall well-being.

5. Laughter Helps You Burn Calories

How exactly does laughter burn calories? While laughing, your heart rate increases, in turn speeding up your metabolism. Did you know that laughing for 10–15 minutes a day can burn up to 40 calories? Laughing every day for a year can help you lose 3–4 pounds a year. This may not look much if you’re looking to lose weight, but experiencing the feel-good benefits of endorphins will at least help you get hooked on exercise.

6. Laughter Makes Life’s Burdens More Bearable

We all face problems and difficulties in life, but looking at the funny side and finding humor in challenging life situations can lighten the burden. A burst of shared laughter with family and a group of friends diffuses anger and resolves conflict faster. The problems will still be there, but you have a much clearer perspective and creative mind to face these problems after a burst of hearty laughter.

7. Laughter Is Good for Your Mental Wellness

Laughter has many beneficial effects on a person’s overall mental health, thanks to the endorphins released after laughing, improved relationships, stress relief, and lighter burdens in life. Laughing can always help prevent or at least decrease depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. 

Humor Therapy: Techniques to Laugh More Often

You pretty much want to laugh like a kid again by now. Start by making a conscious choice of laughing more often. Remind yourself to laugh as many times each day and incorporate humor in your everyday life.

Use laughter therapy as your go-to treatment for emotional and mental healing. Set a goal to smile more often and use laughter therapy to take care of your mental wellness. Laughing will come more naturally to you in the end if you are consistent with your practices. 

1. Be Grateful and Happy

To laugh more often, find happiness within by being thankful for life’s blessings. Start your day by looking for things to appreciate in your life. Instead of craving for what you’re missing in life, be grateful for what you already have. When you start appreciating your blessings, including the people who love you and the roof over your head, you develop a grateful attitude that predisposes you to look for and notice the positive things in life. 

2. Stay Connected with the People You Love

If you want to laugh more, spend more time with the people you love. Host dinner with friends, organize game nights, socialize more, and have plenty of giggles with your best friend.

The best part of including laughter in social gatherings is that it helps people stay positive. You are making one of the best emotional investments when you stay connected with the people in your life and create fun memories. Have you noticed that friends and family who laugh more often have lesser tension toward each other? That’s because laughter brings people together and has the power to improve relationships. 

3. Loosen up and Laugh at Yourself

Taking yourself too seriously or being too uptight hinders you from laughing often. Learn how to incorporate laughter into your everyday life by loosening up and avoiding being overly sensitive.

If you can find humor in your mistakes and use laughter therapy in challenging situations, you won’t overthink too much and not easily feel stressed over petty things. Your humor is an excellent way to turn negative emotions into positive ones and overcome anger issues. 

4. Surround Yourself with Funny People

If you want to laugh constantly, surround yourself with people who can make you laugh. Hang out more often with a happy group or befriend a funny person. That’s why humorous people have a lot of friends—because they’re fun to hang out with. 

5. Spend More Time with Your Kids

Laughing is contagious, and hanging out with little kids can make you happy. Remember that children laugh at least 300 times a day, so you might want to be a part of that. That’s why parents say that even after a tiring day at work, their stress all goes away when they come home to their kids. It is for this reason that children are called ‘happy pills.’

If you’re childless, you can hang out with your niece or nephew or volunteer to babysit a kid’s friend. Other than kids, pets, especially dogs, can make you burst into laughter because of all the funny things they do. 

6. Watch Funny Videos

Do you know why sitcoms like The Big Bang Theory or Friends are great hits? Because everybody loves to laugh. Do you know why many comedians are so popular? Because the laughter they bring can drastically improve a person’s mood.

Watching funny videos of comedy shows on YouTube, hanging out in a comedy club, or reading a funny book are excellent techniques to induce laughter. They’re great activities because they make it easier for people to make laughing a habit. 

7. Smile More Often

Yes, smiling is different from laughter, but it’s where it all starts. Smiling can trick your brain into happiness. Smile more often, even to strangers, because this is contagious. It’s how you spread happiness and positive vibes.

Stop and smell the roses instead of spending too much time fiddling with your phone. Smile at the person who served your coffee, greet the doorman, and say “thank you” every now and then to people who serve you. Place a picture of your family on your work desk to find inspiration and a reason to smile even when you’re tired.

Do things that make you smile, like making a cup of coffee, eating your favorite dessert, listening to happy songs, or making a short phone call with a loved one. Laughter therapy is not limited to laughing; It includes smiling as well. 

Bottom line: Live, Love, Laugh

Now that you know the benefits of incorporating laughter in your everyday life and how to laugh more, share a smile and laugh more often starting today. Learn how to live, love, and laugh to be a winner in life.

Life is full of challenges, so instead of stressing yourself with overthinking, try to find the humor in each situation. If you’re going through stressful situations, laughter therapy can help you feel more relaxed and positive, improve your relationships, and boost your overall mental health.

Here at Kentucky Counseling Center, we employ laughter therapy as one of the interventions to avoid mental illness. We use laughter exercises to help our clients deal with stress and laugh their problems away. If you want to know more about our services, explore our site or schedule an appointment now with our mental health experts.

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