Although laughter may be the best medicine, recent research shows that giggles could be bad for your health as it could leave you literally in stitches. A study that has looked at the benefits and the disadvantages of laughter in patients from 1946 to the present day found out that a loud chuckle could cause heart rupture.
Researchers from Oxford and Birmingham universities concluded that laughter could have severe health complications. A woman who had racing heat syndrome died after laughing intensely, and this led to a heart rupture or torn gullet. An intake of breath when one is laughing could lead to one inhaling foreign bodies, and this could lead to one having asthma attacks. Additionally, bursts of laughter are proven to trigger hernias.
The review also found that chuckling could also have a positive impact on the health of individuals. For instance, laughter reduced stiffness of the arterial wall and according to researchers; this could relieve tension thus lowering risk of heart attack.
Genuine laughter throughout the day could also lead to one burning 2000 calories and this could lower blood sugar level in diabetics. Hospital clowns would also be able to improve lung function for patients having chronic obstructive pulmonary condition. Thirty six percent of would-be-mothers were likely to get pregnant after IVF and embryo transfer when entertained by a clown compared with twenty percent in the control group.
According to the researchers, the review was mainly to challenge the view that laughter is only beneficial but rather to indicate that humor is beneficial and has a low risk of causing harm. Their conclusion was that it is yet to be seen if “sick jokes” may make someone ill or do jokes in bad taste cause distortion of the sense of taste.
According to the research, the authors categorized effects as either harmful or beneficial although some effects like lowering threshold for seduction could not be categorized. The authors of the review added that ignoring the benefits of laughter would be serious but dismissing the harms too would be careless.