Why Staying Positive After a Difficult Diagnosis Can Positively Affect Health
- By: Scott Vanderhoef
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Have you ever felt yourself ramping up to bubble over with unrestrained laughter, at the most ill-timed moment – in a packed elevator, a hushed waiting room, or a religious service? Although there are, obviously, occasions when we must stamp down the silliness, writer Jane Heller says that, “Humor can keep us balanced, even in the grimmest of times. It reminds us that despite illness and disability, there are moments of real joy in life and we need to embrace them.”
The advantages of laughter are phenomenal, including:
- Releasing endorphins that minimize stress
- Strengthening brain connectivity
- Supplying a social boost
- Reducing pain
- Strengthening the immune system
- Improving mood
- Defending the heart from cardiovascular disease
- Revitalizing blood circulation and muscle relaxation, both of which relieve stress
- And many more
Despite the fact that there’s nothing funny about being given a difficult diagnosis for a family member, there are ways to keep an inherent sense of positivity that might lead to more opportunities for laughter:
- Be intentional about placing bits of humor throughout your home/office; for example, a favorite comic strip, meme, funny photographs, etc.
- Look into a laughter yoga class – yes, there really is such a thing!
- Choose reading material and television shows that incorporate comedic lightheartedness. Browse the internet for funny videos, or new jokes to add to your repertoire.
- Spend time with friends and family who raise your spirits. Remember past memories together that make you laugh, and create new ones!
- Discover how to laugh at yourself, shifting your internal dialogue from reprimands to the relief in recognizing we are all human.
Surprisingly, even if you don’t genuinely feel like laughing, positive aspects can still be achieved through faking or forcing laughter, according to certified health coach Nancy Kalish.
Heaven at Home Senior Care’s caregivers help bring delight and laughter to seniors and respite for their families on a daily basis. Our friendly senior companions spend quality time with older adults, engaging in conversations, games, puzzles, exercise, fun outings, and naturally, some laughter. And with our full range of in-home care services, such as meal preparation, light housekeeping, and tending to personal care needs, family caregivers, as well as the senior citizens they love, are able to spend more quality time together, enabling family members to simply enjoy each other’s company. Allow us to help brighten your world! Contact us at (866) 381-0500 any time to find out more about senior care in University Park and to schedule an in-home consultation.