Depression therapy

Depression therapy using humor and laughter is inexpensive, risk-free and readily available. So what can you lose?

Remember laughing so hard that your sides hurt and tears streamed from your eyes? When is the last time you laughed like that?

A 'Psychology Today' article entitled 'Happily Ever Laughter' cites a study which shows that the average child in kindergarten laughs an average of 300 times a day. The typical adult laughs a measly 4 - 6 times a day.

If you haven't laughed in a while it is high time you did. There is lots of research to show that laughter is the best medicine for a lot of illnesses including depression.

Le's explore how laughter can make us feel better physically and emotionally. Research about the benefits of laughter show a multitude of studies showing that laughter can help with everything from cardiovascular health to reducing anxiety and feelings of depress

Ways that Depression Therapy can help ypu:

  • Laughter can strengthen the immune system by activating cells that attack viruses
  • Laughter can lower blood pressure by inducing relaxation and preventing the release of stress hormones such as cortisol
  • Laughter has been described as 'internal jogging.' As you inhale oxygen it stimulates heart and blood circulation
  • Laughter can trigger the release of endorphins which give you a sense of well being . Endorphins are natural pain killers
  • Laughter can reduce stress and anxiety because it relaxes you. It induces your heart rate to slow down and your blood pressure to decrease
  • Laughing with others may be the best way to reap the benefits of laughter as it improves our mood through social connection and can decrease feelings of alienation and lowers the risk for depression

Laughing at a comedian or watching a funny movie can provide a lift in mood, however, regular group sessions where you laugh with others can be therapeutic for depression. A group laughter method called 'Laughter Yoga' is a credible treatment for depression and anxiety.

Laughter Yoga groups can be found all over the world. People come together and participate in exercises which combine yoga techniques with forced laughter.

The Laughter Yoga leaders who run these groups believe that you don't need to laugh at a joke to reap the benefits of laughter.

The Laughter Yoga idea was started by Dr. Madan Kataria a family physician from Mumbay, India, and his wife who was a yoga teacher.

As quoted by Dr. Kataria, "Laughter cannot solve your problems, but it can you the energy to face your problems and look at life in a different and positive light."

In Philadelphia there are nuns laughing for recreation and relaxation. At the Pentagon, Colonel James Scott created laughter programs for families of soldiers deployed to Iraq as part of the Natioal Guard.

The wonderful thing thing about Laughter Yoga therapy is that it is easy. Laughter is infectious!

You can find a Laughter Yoga club near you on the Internet.Give them a call, they will be more than happy to have you join them!

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