Laughter, by definition, is a vocal expulsion of air from the lungs that can range from a loud burst of sound to a series of quiet chuckles and is usually accompanied by characteristic facial and bodily movements.
Laughter is a human reaction to occasions of humor. While smiling is a mild, silent form of laughter, it is also categorized as giggles, chuckles, hoots, cackles, snickers, chortles and guffaws.
Women tend to laugh in a more “sing-song” way, while men tend to laugh more like a grunt or snort. Babies start to laugh at just 4 months old. Most children laugh about 400 times a day, while adults only laugh about 15 times a day. Somehow, as we age, we lose a few hundred laughs a day. By learning to laugh and smile more often, we gain many positive health benefits. Laughter is still the best medicine.
Benefits of laughter
• Widens blood vessels
• Reduces stress
• Raises antibodies in the blood
• Releases pain-relieving endorphins
• Provides physical and emotional release
• Helps protect against heart disease
• Lowers blood sugar levels
• Helps people heal more quickly
• Releases beneficial neurotransmitters
Laughter is contagious and makes others around you more positive
With all these benefits, you may be wondering how you can get more laughs in your life…
• Watch a funny movie.
• Listen to a comedian.
• Laugh at your mistakes.
• Surround yourself with those who make you feel good.
• Clip cartoons or funny photos and make a laugh book to look at when you feel blue.
• Learn to play — games and activities can be a great source of laughter.
• Reminisce about funny times.
• Read a joke book.
• Act silly.
• Visit the zoo and watch the monkeys play
• Fake it until you make it; a fake laugh will make the body respond as though the laugh is real and cause the same health benefits.