This April, we are celebrating the positive influence of humor and laughter. National Humor Month was founded in 1976 by Larry Wilde to shed light on how embracing your funny bone can enhance the immune system, reduce anxiety, and improve heart health.
Humor in the Medical Field
Laughter produces endorphins and acts as a natural painkiller for your patients. Relaying a joke or humorous story to a patient can help him or her relate to you and form a vital bond between patient and caregiver. A good joke can also reduce a patient’s stress and anxiety.
When applying humor in the medical field, make sure your jokes are appropriate for the situation and do not make light of a patient’s situation. An insensitive joke can shatter the bond between you and your patient and leave the patient in distress.
Laughter Has a Full-Body Effect
The increased blood flow that occurs when we laugh can help prevent future cardiovascular problems. The act of laughing also causes us to relax our muscles and relieve tension, something that can make all the difference for a patient in pain. Moreover, a simple chuckle will increase the production of T-cells and antibodies that help your body stay strong and healthy.
Introduce Laughter into Your Routine
Surrounding yourself with witty people can help decrease your stress. As a travel nurse, you have ample opportunity to meet new people and seek out fellow like-minded nurses. Being around friends and colleagues that make you laugh alleviates daily stress and reduces depression.
Laughter can act as an energy booster and will give you that extra pep you need during a long shift. Set aside time to take a humor break throughout the day to watch your favorite sitcom or listen to a funny podcast.
Finding humor and levity in your everyday life is an essential part of a happy and healthy lifestyle. To learn more about the therapeutic values of humor, visit the National Humor Month site.