Caregiver in Perry FL
You’ve likely heard the expression that laughter is the best medicine. But it’s more than just an expression – humor and laughter have many health benefits associated with them. Numerous studies have shown that laughter can have marked improvements in a person’s immune system, blood pressure, blood flow and even stress hormones. It can also boost one’s morale, increase communication skills and enrich the overall quality of a person’s life.
This is National Humor Month, started in 1976 by comedian and best-selling author Larry Wilde, Director of The Carmel Institute of Humor. The purpose behind the month is to increase public awareness on how joy and laughter can positively impact someone’s health and life.
Feeling better physically is reason enough to laugh more, but humor and laughing can actually make people smarter. Research has paired laughter to increased creativity and one’s problem-solving ability. And, if your parents like to tell jokes, as a lot of seniors do, they might even improve their memory as they try to recall some of their all-time favorites, or even new ones they recently heard.
And as your parent ages, and loses more friends to illness or disease, helping them use laughter can be a wonderful way to help them form new bonds with people, or strengthen older ones.
So while you’re acting as a family caregiver for a loved one, why not encourage them to laugh, or even laugh with them? You’ll both feel better for it. Wonder how to get more laughter into their—and your—life? There are many ways, including:
- Help your family member spend time with fun, playful people—even jokesters, if they wish. Fun and laughter can be contagious.
- Bring humor into conversations with your family members. Perhaps share with them something funny that happened to you; it might encourage them to do the same. Or come right out and ask them to share some funny stories about things that happened in their lifetime
- There are gadgets you can buy called laugh boxes that do nothing more than play pre-recorded laughter over and over. But laughter is contagious. So it won’t be long before your family member is laughing, too.
- If there’s nothing immediately funny, just start laughing over nothing. Before long your family member will probably be laughing, too.
- You can also watch comedies on television or take your parent to the movies to watch a comedy. Comedy clubs are also a great way to get lots of laughter in your loved one’s life.
- Even comic strips in the newspaper or online can provide bellyaching laughter for your loved one.
- Finally, in tense or difficult situations, try to help your family member find the humor. There often is something comical if we look hard enough. If nothing else, it will lighten the mood and make the situation easier to deal with.