is said to be addictive. Given its several health benefits, that
is desirable. Firstly it gives a sense of well being because of
release of endorphins and neuropeptides. By ensuring the
inhalation of more oxygen, the lifeline of the system, it makes
people feel better. It decreases stress leading to lowered
stiffness of muscles - muscle relaxation easing headaches, body
aches and other muscular problems.
As blood vessels get dilated, blood pressure
falls by 10-20 mm mercury after 10 minutes of laughter - very
useful for patients of hypertension. With levels of antibodies
and natural killer cells going up with laughter, it also
improves the immunity - evident from thousands of laughter club
members have decreased incidences of cough and cold.
Laughter has innumerable other benefits. It
proves a potent anti-stress factor, decreases asthmatic attacks,
increases stamina, relives arthritic pain, ensures good sleep
and elevates mood. Since the serotonin levels go up after
laughter, it is an effective antidote for depression too.
Haasya Yoga is a method of group laughter
that is based on yogic techniques. The exercises are designed
based entirely on yoga stretching, breathing and variety of
stimulated laughs, starting with deep breathing. As simulation
helps stimulation, exercise induced laughter - that compliments
but is not a substitute for natural laughter - increases the
capacity for the latter.
Helping individuals increase their capacity
to laugh more, be more self-confident and self-expressive.
Positive qualities are cultivated, thereby removing negative
emotions as jealousy, fear, guilt and anger. The laughter club
is in effect a behavioral training institute that spontaneously
raises spirits at no cost. The concept of a laughter bank, where
people come up with creative ideas for different types of
laughter, for instance is to bring in play fullness into the
atmosphere. The fun, frolic and childish attitude generated not
only reduces inhibitions, but also curtails tensions.
Under certain conditions though laughter
therapy is not recommended. Patients with hernia, advanced
piles, eye complications, Angolan pain and those who have just
undergone major surgery should not venture into this therapy
without the explicit advice of a doctor. Pregnant woman should
also preferably avoid laughter sessions till some conclusive
data regarding the safety is available. Patients suffering from
tuberculosis, chronic bronchitis and other respiratory
infections where phlegm is produced must take precaution against
spread of infection. Finally, even a normal person experiencing
discomfort while laughing, must discontinue immediately and seek
expert medical help.