Is Laughter Really Good Medicine?

I’m a physician. Actually a doctor by day and a comedienne by night. Therefore, I actually believe that “Laughter is the Best Medicine“, for the right situation. In the past two days, I have seen death of a friend, new life “a baby girl and niece”, and now dying…in my family. We have found something to cheer about in all three situations.

Humor has been our coping mechanism, and it has kept us from falling apart.

But, when you are the target of someone’s bad joke or “hoax”, in the case of the Australian DJ”s, it’s time to take a look at what we mean by Laughter being the Best Medicine. Like my friend and colleague, Dr. Patch Adams’ says, Laughter is never good when someone is making fun of you.

Media outlets and D J‘s love to poke fun at people. OK. This reportedly isn’t the first time this Australian station has played havoc on someone’s life with a hoax.

Well, in this case, they took it a bit too far again, when they were able to get phone numbers and pretend like they were “Royals”, and have fun at someone else's expense. Security breeches, false premises, disguised voices, perpetrating, lying, and all. Cause and effect. Who could have known that the nurse that took the call was that fragile, and that she would take her own life? May God Bless her family.

Maybe they didn’t learn from their previous lessons. Maybe they don’t care. Maybe enough is enough.

This has led to a tragedy beyond their hoax imagination. And, yes they are at cause. Mental Illness is on the rise, worldwide. so playing “harmless” jokes on the unsuspecting requires someone to be RESPONSIBLE for their stupid actions towards others. My Hippocratic oath says, “Do no further harm”.

That should equally apply to individuals and agencies that are allowed and encouraged to have freedom of speech and free access to your mind. Hopefully, they will learn and there will be some changes made in the way that media is allowed to perpetrate and falsify. Hopefully, the nurse’s family will find closure, blessings and peace.

Laughter is not the cure for everything, but it can certainly work wonders on a broken heart, or temporarily reverse anger or the effects of stress? Laughter produces beneficial psychological effects, by exercising the lungs and stimulating the circulatory system and helping the heart. Be careful how you use it. Remember, when used the wrong way, the side effects are not harmless.

Remember that there are idiots everywhere, and always take time to laugh at yourself, first. That’s always the best medicine. Keep Laughing.

Author's Bio: 

Do we laugh because we’re happy, or are we happier because we laugh? And, do we live longer, if we laugh more?

Cynthia Shelby-Lane is a physician, speaker, author, talk show host, and comedienne. Yes, she believes that laughter is good medicine and she has the research, experience and talent to prove it. She is a “doctor by day” and a comedienne by night. As a graduate of the University of Michigan Medical School and The Second City School of Comedy in Chicago, she also founded her own comedy troupe, Girlfriend Village & Company.

Shelby Lane’s candid and comedic speaking style and her zany approach to life allows her to engage an audience with humor, using truly unforgettable stories, jokes and situations that alter your perception of how life should and could be. She has dramatic tales of survival “in the hood” that demonstrate our ability to laugh, even when the cards are down. Her message and mantra is “Laugh More - Live Longer”.