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Humor: Benefits

Need something to cheer you up or serve as a study break? This guide will give you a laugh! It's also good for any research you're doing that involves humor.

Physical Benefits of Laughter

Laughter can:

  • help diabetes, heart disease, and asthma
  • boost the immune system and help fight infection
  • burn calories
  • relieve stress
  • improve breathing
  • relax muscles
  • increase pain tolerance

Psycho-physiological responses may include:

  • triggering changes in muscles, in the immune system, and hormone production
  • leading to more positive emotions, which improves quality of life
  • paving the way for better strategies for coping with stress
  • increasing social skills, leading to health-enhancing benefits

Social Benefits of Laughter

Laughter also:

  • binds people together. It synchronizes the brains of speaker and listener so that they are emotionally attuned.
  • builds rapport.
  • establishes--or restores--a positive emotional climate and a sense of connection between two people.
  • defuses anger, anxiety, and conflict.
  • enhances teamwork.
  • attracts others to us.
  • allows a positive way to deal with stressful things.
  • enables you to have fun at work.

Why Humor?

If you do not have access to the full text of these articles, try searching for them in your library databases. They should be available there.

Laughing Together