The Benefits of Laughter Therapy in Healing

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If you are moving through mental health treatment or treatment for substance abuse, the healing process can at times seem slow, isolating, and challenging. With the right type of treatment program and the right type of therapy, you can add a modern twist to your healing process. How? By capitalizing on the science of laughter.

What is Laughter Therapy?

Laughter therapy is a form of treatment where participants intentionally laugh in order to promote improved mental and physical well-being. While it’s all too common to seek out a depressing movie or television show full of conflict and violence if you’re feeling depressed or angry, doing so only further fuels those emotions.

When you are feeling depressed or anxious, laughter is actually the best medicine. Watching something funny or doing something silly can help promote the physical and physiological benefits of laughter, even if your laughter is fake.

What to Expect with Laughter Therapy

In laughter therapy sessions, you might participate in exercises like relaxation techniques, deep breathing, and intentional laughter, even if that laughter is fake. 

These techniques help to promote natural healing, improve your physical and mental well-being, and relieve stress. Practiced in a group session, laughter therapy can also provide social benefits.

Scientific Benefits of Laughter Therapy in Healing

There are several benefits of laughter therapy in healing, no matter what it is you are trying to heal from. 

Psychological Benefits

When you laugh, it has a positive impact on your mood. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, which can improve your mood, reduce depression, and even relieve pain temporarily. 

Laughter reduces the level of stress hormones in your body, which can reduce the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Chronic pain

Moreover, the benefits of laughter therapy in healing extend beyond just the levels of stress hormones. Too often, people who are struggling with recovery or healing are consumed with doubt, fear, anxiety, or worry. But laughter can transport you somewhere else, giving you better perspectives and letting you recognize that problems that may have seemed all-consuming before are not as bad. 

Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of laughter therapy and healing is its ability to increase resilience. Your level of resilience represents how quickly you are able to bounce back from challenges. Resiliency comes from having gratitude, an optimistic outlook, and a growth mindset. 

Laughter gives you the ability to see the funnier side of things and to build your resilience in such a way that when you are next facing a challenge, stressful situation, or even a setback in your long-term goals, it won’t bring you down as far.

Physiological Benefits

Physiologically, studies have found when you laugh, it increases your blood pressure and heart rate. These increases help deliver essential nutrients to your muscles and your immune system while also increasing oxygenation in your blood. 

Laughing can increase your breathing rate, which helps improve lung function. 

When you laugh, it causes muscles to contract and relax, which can release tension that you didn’t realize you were holding on to. In fact, studies have found that deep laughter can leave your muscles relaxed for up to forty-five minutes after the fact.  

Social Benefits

The benefits of laughter therapy extend to social aspects. Group therapy sessions centered on laughter therapy or any type of comedic environment can help you create a sense of connection with other people. Laughter helps you build relationships that can prove vital in your long-term healing and recovery and also strengthen existing bonds with friends and family.

Reaping the Benefits of Laughter Therapy with The Differents

The Differents is a luxury addiction treatment center in Nevada. With each of our inpatient or outpatient rehab programs in Reno, we help clients foster improved resiliency, learn essential coping skills to manage stress and triggers, and build self-esteem. All of these skill sets come through evidence-based therapies and holistic treatments, including laughter therapy.

The social benefits of improving connection with others are among the biggest benefits of laughter therapy for those who come to our facility. It’s not uncommon for new clients at The Differents to struggle when they don’t know anyone, especially in a group setting. Shared laughter can strengthen bonds and reinforce connections.

These social benefits can extend to other programs like family therapy sessions where you can share a laugh with friends and family to help diffuse any tension or resolve conflicts that might exist in your relationship.If you are ready to learn more about laughter therapy at our trusted drug rehab in Reno, call our team at 844-290-1362.

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