Did you know that laughter has an effect similar to antidepressants?
As a caregiver, laughter is a great resource to have in your toolbox. Cause let’s face it – the role can be emotionally draining. Sometimes a laugh can be the pick-me-up you need to get through the day; keeping things in perspective, diverting from stressful situations and helping to refocus the mind.
The Science Behind a Good Laugh
Laughing activates the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin, the same brain chemical affected by the most common types of antidepressants, SSRIs. It’s not clear from the research how long this effect sticks around, but the burst of brain activity laughing triggers is undoubtedly potent, at least for short periods of time.
Other Amazingly Awesome Benefits of Laughter
- Fostering brain connectivity
- Forming social bonds
- Maintaining relationships
- Protecting your heart
- Inducing euphoria
Ideas to Keep Life Funny
We’ve noted the importance of keeping laughter in your life. But what about some ideas to initiate belly-rolling humor? While there are many outlets to find a good laugh these days, here are a few of our favorites:
- Streaming a favorite sitcom on Hulu or Netflix
- Joke books or comic memoirs
- Comedian podcasts
- YouTube clips of comedian standups
A Humorous Prayer About Getting Old
Mary Maxwell’s popular invocation has made the trek around the viral world. Maxwell, a friend of Home Instead co-founders Paul and Lori Hogan, was asked to give the invocation at a company convention. Initially it seemed like a normal prayer, but it soon took a very funny turn.
For other ways to lighten the caregiving mood, consider respite care. Getting additional assistance from a professional caregiver could allow you to spend more time on fun and building your relationship with an aging loved one.