Some health experts look to humor for its healing power

Evidence shows it can improve mental, physical .

The chaplain with a pig snout visiting patients in Jefferson City’s St. Marys Health Center personifies what many medical professionals and researchers are prescribing for their patients — a good dose of humor.

Medical professionals agree patients’ health is no laughing matter, but they are increasingly looking to a growing body of evidence indicating humor’s benefits for physical and mental health, as well as patient-caregiver relationships.

After getting to know them, Chaplain Jim Gearhart intentionally uses humor to relate to patients, their families and hospital staff.

But lightening the mood need not mean silly costumes or telling a joke, Gearhart said. For him, it’s about being able to be comfortable with somebody and making himself accessible to them.

“Humor allows you to take a little control over your situation,” Gearhart said. “If we take things too seriously, emotionally we get weighed down, and that doesn’t help physically.”

 


Comments


View Comments / Leave a Comment

This post currently has 2 comments.
You can read the comments or leave your own thoughts.


    Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Apr 2005
    Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.

APA Reference
, . (2005). Some health experts look to humor for its healing power. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 27, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2005/04/17/some-health-experts-look-to-humor-for-its-healing-power/

 

Recent Comments
  • Divorcing: My wife became depressed and negative after our child died. It started the day after, when she exploded at...
  • Joseph: My family think im crazy when i tell them that i smell bad everyday. Whenever im at school or in a public...
  • Kristina: I liked the way you worded the title to grab attention of your readers. While I agreed with most of what...
  • Piniewski MD: Well said. Regardless of our positions on this topic, the behavior :using Dr Google is unlikely to...
  • Starfate: I’m 61 and trying to determine the “best” way to tell my AS spouse that I’m leaving...
Subscribe to Our Weekly Newsletter


Find a Therapist
Enter ZIP or postal code



Users Online: 8062
Join Us Now!