Laughter can have an incredible impact on senior health, especially for seniors who laugh heartily and often. While everyone knows that a good laugh can lift the spirits, few people are aware of the amazing effects that laughter has on a person’s short- and long-term physical wellbeing. Following are four health benefits of laughter that give aging adults and their live-in or part-time caregivers ample reason to start pursuing mirth relentlessly.
1. Get a Cardiovascular Workout In
Laughter is a great form of cardiovascular exercise, especially for people who aren’t able to engage in other high-energy activities. Surprisingly, it burns the same amount of calories as taking a short, comfortable walk at an easy pace. Laughter gets the heart pumping and boosts blood flow in just a matter of seconds.
2. Work Muscles and Then Relax
A good, hearty laugh can give the stomach an incredible workout. That’s why the best laughs often leave people doubled-over, gasping for breath, and holding onto their sides. Not only is this the most fun anyone can have while toning the abdominal region, but it’s also guaranteed to be followed by an utter state of relaxation. Laughing causes every muscle to relax for a period that can last up to 45 minutes.
3. Activate T Cells
Laughing activates the T cells that are specifically designed to help the body fight disease. It also boosts the immune system in other ways. Thus, whether dealing with an illness or infection or just hoping to prevent these things from occurring, living a life full of merriment could be a senior’s best defense.
4. Get Rid of Stress Hormones
When someone laughs loud and long, the body gets flooded with mood-boosting chemicals known as endorphins. The presence of stress hormones that cause feelings of tension and anxiety also start to abate. Due to this fact, if a senior has been feeling depressed, stressed or jittery, letting go and issuing a hearty chuckle can help him or her instantly move into a brighter and significantly more positive state of mind.
Interested in learning more about senior health and wellness? Reach out to the dedicated staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care Sonoma County families count on. We incorporate our Balanced Care Method in all of our care services, helping seniors maintain a high quality of living through diet, exercise, and a sense of purpose. Give us a call at (707) 843.4368 to speak with a Care Manager to learn more.