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How Can I Laugh If I Am Depressed?

Updated on October 22, 2015

Living a life with laughter and using it against depression and stress is the best way to live. One of the most important benefits of laughter is that it is the best medicine and the smartest way to manage problems in life. It is free of charge and available to all. Everybody knows know what laughter is, but not everybody knows what laughter is able to do. People usually consider laughter as a reflection of good mood or instinctive behavior, but this phenomenon is much, much more than that! People can use laughter to fight depression and to achieve happiness and success in life.

Aspects of laughter explain laughter as a skill, an artistry, habit, cure and aid against difficulties and grievances.

So, how do you treat depression and stress with laughter?

First, you need to know that laughter is:

*a skill

You can train the skill of laughing to improve your health and relations with other people. Laughter develops other skills such as managing your emotions, facing pain because of past losses and traumas, managing stress, anger. It is a very efficient skill in communication.

* an artistry

The art of laughing gives birth to virtues such as enthusiasm, passion, optimism, hope, generosity, kindness, nobleness, altruism, compassion, joy…Who knows how to laugh, knows how to live.


Laughter is the most powerful habit in the world! Positive habits derive positive situations.


Laughter  is the best cure against all physical and emotional diseases and problems.

*aid against difficulties and grievances

Laughter helps in the process of problem-solving; it removes the feelings of loneliness and alienation. It leaves no room for quarrels. Unfortunately, people fighting diseases and great difficulties in life can´t laugh or smile, which is only normal and logical. Still, laughter shouldn´t be just the consequence of happy events, but also the cause for such events. Many psychologists say that we shouldn´t laugh only when we are happy and sound, but also that we should laugh in order to be happy and sound. With laughter you can go against stress and depression!


When we were babies, laughing was just as natural as crying. Now, to adults who have experienced the burden of life and don´t even smile too often, laughter is a decision and a skill to practice. Research shows that little children laugh 200-300 times a day while adults laugh 12-17 times (according to William Fry, M.D., professor of psychiatry at Stanford University Medical School)  – and some people almost never L Children probably laugh so much because they are not limited by the boundaries of reason, therefore, laughter must be coming from the heart and not reason.

3 main reasons to laugh

Thinking about the reasons to laugh? Can´t think of any? Read the following reasons carefully and think about them daily because the benefits of laughter are precious!

[1] Laughter strengthens the auto-immune system and makes you enduring to diseases

Some clinics are implementing laughter therapies as these kinds of therapy have shown positive impacts on healing. Since 1986, The Big Apple Circus (New York) has sent its clowns to children´s hospitals to entertain children, help them feel better and more relaxed – to make them laugh. Benefits of laughter make a very long list. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • Laughing stimulates the release of hormones important for our defense mechanism.
  • Laughter is a natural stress ´´switch off´´. When we are laughing, our body releases the hormones to help us feel good and reduces the release of cortisol (stress hormone). It stimulates positive thinking and helps the development of relaxation techniques.
  • Several scientific investigations have shown that watching video comedies (about 30 to 60 minutes of time) increases the levels of the antibody immunoglobulin A (IgA) in blood and slaver. Immunoglobulin A is part of immune system and protects from bacterial infections of the upper respiratory system, such as cold or influenza.

  • Otto Warburg who won the Nobel prize twice, revealed that most diseases are caused by insufficient quantity of oxygen in the body. Laughter increases oxygen levels in organism, improves circulation, lowers the blood pressure, has positive impact on the heart and gastrointestinal tract.

  • You don´t like working out? Laugh instead! Especially, if you want stronger abdominal muscles. Laughter can replace body work out. Laughing a 100 times in a day gives the same results as 20 minutes of cardio exercises! One single minute of real laughter is equal to 10 minutes of riding a bike!
  • Laughter stimulates growth because it affects the release of the growth hormone, therefore, make children laugh as much as possible; let them cry with laughter!

To look inside the book, please click on the amazon link.
To look inside the book, please click on the amazon link.

Extensive research on ´´laughter therapy´´  and the benefits of laughter began after Norman Cousins published an article explaining his condition in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1976; he was diagnosed with Bechterew Disease (also known as ankylosing spondylitis) i.e. acute inflammation of the spine and possibly other parts of the body. According to doctors, his condition was so severe than he was given only a few months to live.

Norman knew that negative thoughts and attitudes increased stress and therefore, the chances for different illnesses, so he reasoned that positive thinking had the opposite effect. He left the hospital and checked in a hotel where he watched humorous programes on TV (along with mega doses of vitamin C), which resulted in two hours of normal, pain-free sleep. He made a habit out of this experiment until he recovered.

The article he wrote later became the first chapter of his book Anatomy of an Illness.

[2] Laughter is a natural anti-aging medium and face-lifting ; it nourishes the skin and makes it radiant. Laughing makes us all prettier. Have you ever seen a smiling face that wasn´t pretty?

[3] Laughter is an excellent mean in social interactions because it strengthens the virtues such as optimism, hope, self-confidence, trust, generosity, etc. and it removes flaws, such as pessimism, anxiety, suspicion, envy, shame and misbehavior. Experts claim that humor is a characteristic attributive to balanced, self-confident, flexible and tolerant people. It is an inner value, view of the world – positive attitude.

"Laughter is not at all a bad beginning for a friendship, and it is far the best ending for one."
(Oscar Wilde, Irish poet, novelist, dramatic and critic, 1854-1900)

Of course, there are situations when it is not appropriate to laugh out loud. There are also moments for grievance. Or, if you meet a depressed person and want to cheer her up, it wouldn´t be appropriate to laugh and tell jokes. The person would probably become more depressed if you did. A person with sincere intents radiating happiness and satisfaction can entice a smile from a person in a bad mood by mere presence, without words.

Did you know these facts about laughter?

  • The first World Day of Laughter was celebrated on January 9th, 2000 in Kopenhagen. Over 10.000 people from different countries gathered to laugh together. This event was registered in the Guinness World Records. The World Day of laughter is celebrated every year (currently first Sunday in April).
  • When somebody tells a joke, humor integrates both hemispheres of our brain; the left hemisphere is used to decipher the verbal content of a joke while the right hemisphere interprets whether it is funny or not.

Make use of all the benefits of laughter!The best thing to do when you have troubles is to ridicule and laugh at them!

Feeling depressed? Problems won´t go away with medicines and chemicals! Use laughter to overcome depression and stress.

Baby laugh

Copyright © vox vocis. All rights reserved.


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    • vox vocis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago

      drbj and SingleCityGirl: I believe that laughter is essential to our well-being, too. I am glad you liked the hub :-)

    • SingleCityGirl profile image


      9 years ago from San Diego

      I agree, laughter is the best "cure-all". This was interesting.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      9 years ago from south Florida

      Thank you, vv, for stressing the importance of laughter with this excellent hub.

      I am a fervent believer that laughter is essential to our well-being. They say that the optimist laughs to forget. But the pessimist forgets to laugh. I believe it. :)


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