When is the last time you laughed so hard it brought tears to your eyes or made your sides hurt? Humor is the most infectious way to break ice and bond with people but did you know that laughter is also good for your health?
Laughter relaxes the entire body. Physical tension and stress leave the muscles after a hearty laugh, sometimes for up to 45 minutes. It is also thought that laughter while decreasing stress hormones also increases immune cells and infection fighting antibodies. That’s right! Laughter can improve your health! And remember endorphins? We talked about the natural pain fighter in a previous post. Laughter is also a trigger for endorphin release. Those feel good chemicals your body makes. They give you an over-all sense of well being. Guess what else laughter does? It improves blood flow. This is great news for your heart.
Laughter also improves mood. It adds joy to life. Laughter eases anxiety, reduces fears and makes it easier to “bounce back” from difficult situations.
Consider too, the benefits of laughter in a social setting. Laughter makes us want to be a part of things. It draws us in. It can make a group project more enjoyable and bonds people together in a way that nothing else can. It is also a wonderful mechanism to diffuse conflict. It is difficult to argue with someone who is making us laugh.
Multiple Sclerosis is a scary disease. None of us knows how much it will affect us, physically, mentally or what it will take from us. That in itself is not a laughing matter; however, if you learn to laugh at the silly things in life, and sometimes at ourselves, it will vastly improve your mood, your relationships and your health. Don’t let Multiple Sclerosis rob you of your sense of humor.