Why Is Laughter Important In A Person’s Life

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If you are asking yourself why is laughter important in a person’s life, then you have come to the right place.  We are going to dig deep in this post and explore many of the benefits of laughing.  

I remember being a kid, and when the Sunday paper came in, I would quickly find the comics section and read that first. Or when the new issue of Reader’s Digest would arrive, I would find and read the funny articles, Laughter is the Best Medicine and Humour in Uniform first. Why? Because laughter was the best part of it all. 

As children, we instinctively grasp the importance of laughter. We have no social worries about seeking it out and enjoying it thoroughly when we find it. As we grow older, we become the serious adults that we think we should be to cope in this oh so very serious world. And well, we lose the power of laughter in our lives.

But we always continue to seek it out.  

Love laughter?  Be sure to check out the following collecions of quotes that emphasis the importance of laughter in a person’s life:

why is laughter important in a relationship

The first place we try to find laughter is in our relationships.

According to a survey of women in an article in Psychology today:

In regards to humor, research shows very clearly that women value humor ability in a mate more than men. This is one of the top three traits that consistently show up in surveys of women’s mate preferences. In personal dating ads, for example, women requested dates with a sense of humor at least twice as often as men did.

Women tend to like a man that can make them laugh. Which, when you are looking for someone to spend lots of time with, laughter is an essential part of staying happy. Most of us do not want to be miserable all the time, and if you do, well I hope happiness finds you in whatever form makes you happy.  Or unhappy as the case may be

For men, it wasn’t the women being able to make them laugh that was important to them, it was the woman’s laugh itself that the men were attracted to.

According to an article in Forbes magazine:

Men tend to rate women who laugh a lot (i.e., laugh at their jokes) higher than those who don’t. It’s no surprise, then, that couples who laugh together report having higher-quality relationships. Laughter is a non-negotiable for all involved. Women like someone who makes them laugh and men like a woman who laughs. It seems to indicate that laughter is highly important to both and women when it comes to relationships.

television that makes you laugh

Do you remember the shows from your childhood that made you laugh? I know that I do, staying up late on Saturday night to watch what else but Saturday Night Live. Growing up in a small town and only having three T.V. stations to watch, Saturday Night Live was a link to the big world that I didn’t see where I lived.  

This was pre-internet days mind you, do you remember having to actually wait to watch a show? Or, being mad if you missed a show you wanted to see? There was no way to record it before VHS or DVR. No live streaming service to play it over and over again. Most of the time, you had one shot to see your favorite show.

Times may have changed for how we watch our favorite T.V. shows, but the shows we love to watch haven’t changed. A big part of the shows we love to watch is comedies. I researched lots of top lists of T.V. comedies and tv shows in general, and the one thing I can say for sure is that people can not agree on which ones are the best.

Humor, like life, is subjective to the individual.  

But here are some fun facts about comedies on T.V. 

1.The Simpsons

Since December 17, 1989 people have been laughing at the antics of an animated family that never grows up and never grows old.  

According to Wikipedia, 668 episodes of The Simpsons have been broadcast. It is the longest-running American sitcom, and the longest-running American scripted primetime television series, both in terms of seasons and number of episodes.

2. M.a.s.h

While there is some debate about whether M.A.S.H. is to be considered a comedy or a drama, the industry finally settled it by calling it a comedy-drama. Way to make a decision there.

This show may have had its moments; it made us cry, but for the most part, the antics of the characters always left us laughing. In fact, M.A.S.H. held the record for the most-watched T.V. show of all time from 1983 until 2010, when the super Bowl surpassed it by .1 million viewers. M.A.S.H. still holds the record 40 years later for most-watched T.V. finale

3.  Sitcoms

We do love our comedy sitcoms, as further proof, 8 of the top 10 most-watched season finales of  all T.V. shows were comedies.  

  1.  M.A.S.H.
  2. Cheers
  3. The Fugitive
  4. Seinfeld
  5. Friends
  6. Magnum P.I
  7. The Cosby Show
  8. All In The Family
  9. Family Ties 
  10. Home Improvement.

We like shows that make us laugh, and it keeps us coming back for more and more. From Friends to The Big Bang Theory, the laughter of these characters makes us love them, and we keep watching them keep the laughter going.

I know in my own life the comedy shows I like to watch are How I Met Your Mother, Schitt’s Creek, Parks and Recreation and American Dad.

The reason why I love those shows so much is that we watched them as a family. The laughter we all shared, watching these shows, and talking about them. The often repeated lines always brings a smile to my face and laughter to my heart.

Laughter And Health

Laughter is not only beneficial to us to help us feel better mentally, but it can also improve our overall medical health.  

Blood pressure

Hypertension or high blood pressure can be caused by any number of things, from stress to diet. High blood pressure is also one of the indicators of heart disease or strokes. According to the American Heart Association, in 2018, over 100 million Americans had high blood pressure. This leads to almost a thousand deaths a day due to complications caused by hypertension.  

A study was done on patients undergoing hemodialysis. Patients of the study were given a thirty-minute comedy DVD to watch twice a week during treatment. After eight weeks, the patients watching the DVD had lower blood pressure at the end of the study than participants that did not watch the DVD.  

With 7 out of ten people who have been diagnosed with hypertension being on at least one medication, using laughter to decrease your blood pressure could also help save you money

Cardiovascular system

Laughing is good for your heart, and not just figuratively either. According to heart.org

Research suggests laughter can decrease stress hormones, reduce artery inflammation and increase HDL, the “good” cholesterol. – Suzanne Steinbaum, D.O.

Though the research at this time is still limited, the research that has been done is promising. It is hard to remain depressed and miserable while laughing. Laughter helps take our minds off of the problems we are facing and helps replace them with positive feelings.

Laughter Yoga

We have all heard of the benefits of yoga, and for those of you that have never tried it, it is way harder than it looks. Trying to replicate a pretzel with your body takes muscles that you probably don’t even want to know you have. 

In 1995 physician Dr. Madan Kataria noticed that laughter not only had emotional benefits but physical benefits as well. He gathered some of his friends and associates and started what is now called Laughter Yoga.

Does this sound a little ridiculous to you? Good, that’s a start to making you laugh. Laughter Yoga incorporates clapping, breathing techniques, and of course, laughter. The laughter does start out as forced laughter, but it does soon turn into real laughter, Laughing like smiling can be influenced by those around you.

Watch this brief video of Dr. Kataria explainingLaughter Yoga to see if you are interested, it seems a little cringe-worthy at first. Still, by the end, you might just be laughing at the ridiculousness of it all. 

If you think this will never take off, well, to date, there are over 8,000 of these laughter yoga clubs in 77 countries around the world. We could all use a laugh and what better way than to get some exercise while doing it.

Laughter Can Reduce Pain

In the book The Laughing Cure: Emotional and Physical Healing? A Comedian Reveals Why Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine, Dr. Brian King devotes several chapters to the concept that laughter can help reduce pain. 

Dr. King, who is not only a stand-up comedian but a psychologist as well, tells of how anthropologist Robin Dunbar and his associates tested pain tolerance in patients. 

Putting a wine cooling sleeve onto the subjects and measuring their tolerance to pain. The test subjects were given the test before watching comedic videos and again while watching comedic videos. Their findings showed that while watching the funny videos, the test subjects were able to withstand the pain for a longer duration of time.

They took this experiment a little farther. The doctors found that when they did this same experiment on groups of people, their pain threshold was even higher versus when the test subject was alone. They attributed this to the fact that people are more likely to laugh when they are in group settings.

CHild Humor – More laughter less worry

One study I kept hearing about was about the difference in the laughter of adults versus children. The statistic I kept seeing was children laugh anywhere from 300 to 400 times a day while adults only laugh between 15 and 17.5 times a day. 

I could not find any corroborating evidence of this study. Though I did see a statement by Dr. Michael Titze, that made me laugh.

In 1998 on the occasion of an international congress dealing with therapeutic humor in which participated, among others, William Fry and Patch Adams, someone said that children laugh 400 times a day and adults only 17 times.

Because I was moderating this panel, journalists implied that I was the origin of this statistical statement (not at all true).- Laughter Online University

So the doctor who is often cited as having given this “fact” denies ever having said it.  

In Conclusion

Despite the lack of pure scientific research, one thing we should all agree on, laughter feels good and makes us feel better. So any time we can find a reason to laugh or smile, we should take it. We may not yet have the science to tell us it helps us feel better, but we don’t need that, we can feel it for ourselves every time we laugh.

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