Among the many remedies for good health, laughter is perhaps the most crucial. In fact, research suggests that laughter has a number of health benefits, including improved breathing, a boost to the immune system, and a greater ability to tolerate pain. This places laughter fairly high in the toolbox of medicine. However, one of laughter’s most significant advantages may be its positive impact on mental health and our capacity to deal with life’s many curveballs, particularly as we age. The difficulty is maintaining a strong and ready supply of humor. Our ability to laugh starts to fade around the age of 23, according to research. This is because we start to take on more responsibility as we graduate from college and take on professional jobs, promotions, variable interest rate mortgage loans, and other obligations. However, it seems like a very long time—50 or so years to wait to reclaim one of life’s most valuable gifts, which is why, as with all muscles, the adage “use it or lose it” holds true. It necessitates practice, intention, and vulnerability like all other mindfulness and positive psychology techniques. Understanding the language of laughter is the first step to utilizing the power of laughter. Self-inflicted laughter can occur at will without a humorous or funny prompt. Physical contact or medication can both induce laughter. Laughter can also result from changes in the nervous system of the body or from illnesses of the mind. The term “pathological laughter” refers to this type of laughter. But in terms of health and wellbeing, genuine or spontaneous laughter which is what most people are familiar with is the most significant type of laughter. This is the kind of laughter that is brought on by an external stimulus, like a funny joke, or is the result of feeling good.
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