While caregiving can often be stressful, it also has its funny moments. Humor can help while you’re caring for an older adult.

Of course, chronic illnesses or diseases are certainly no laughing matter. But even if you’re caring for an older adult with a debilitating illness or in declining health, the world doesn’t have to be gloomy and depressing all the time. Even on the worst days, there’s room for laughter.

Humor can be a very effective way of coping with the difficult emotions. While caregivers often resist using humor because they feel guilty or apprehensive about seeming disrespectful, the truth is that laughter can relieve tension in stressful situations.

Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain. Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which can help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress. Laughter can also send a positive, non-alarming message to your loved one.

So go ahead and give humor a try. Have you used laughter to help in caregiving? Share your tips with us on Facebook!