Humor is one of the vital elements of human communication and interaction. It helps individuals to understand each other better and engage in meaningful forms of collaboration. Additionally, it promotes a more attractive image of individuals, various objects, aspects of people’s lives, and some awkward or even negative sides of their routine. For this reason, laughter has always been considered an integral part of any community. However, its healing or therapeutic roles has remained uncovered and untapped. Along with the recognition of its positive impact on individuals, there were few attempts to use this potent tool for healing purposes. Today, this tendency is reconsidered as there many studies aimed at the development of the framework for the application of humor in the healthcare sector to attain better results and help and individuals belonging to the sphere.
The functioning of any health worker is associated with a high level of stress. The complexity of tasks they perform, responsibility, human suffering, and the need for positive results put pressure on specialists and contribute to the appearance of multiple negative consequences. These include burnout, increased turnover rate, depression, decreased motivation, and inability to demonstrate high effectiveness levels (Tremayne and Sharma 30). Patients also experience multiple adverse effects because of pain, fear, and helplessness. The combination of these factors deteriorates outcomes and is taken as one of the major problems of the healthcare sector today (Tremayne and Sharma 30). For this reason, the use of humor and laughter with therapeutic purposes to reduce the level of stress among patients and workers acquires the top priority today.
There are various ways to utilize this tool in the existing setting. First of all, relevant studies outline the critical role of humor in the improvement of psychological well-being (Tremayne and Sharma 29). Considering the fact that nurses face multiple stressors that have a substantial impact on their mental status, mood, and performance, laughter is regarded as an acceptable practice for caregivers (Tremayne and Sharma 30). It offers an opportunity to avoid negative cogitations and shift workers’ attention from some stressful factors to more pleasant ones (Tremayne and Sharma 30). It is also taken as the way to achieve anxiety relief using socially acceptable means and contributes to the improvement of relations within the collective (Tremayne and Sharma 31). For this reason, from the perspective of psychological well-being, humor remains an extremely potent approach that is recommended for all clinical settings.
As for patients, they also benefit from the therapeutic application of humor. In accordance with the research, clients who experience situations associated with laughter have better results (Morishima et al. 10). Additionally, they admit the alleviation of pain, reduced fear and anxiety levels (Morishima et al. 10). The recent report evidence that cancer patients outline the overall improvement of their psychological states because of the use of humor therapy and its results (Morishima et al. 10). For this reason, it becomes a desired method that can be applied for patients with the primary goal to manage pain, stress, and anxiety. Specialists recommend the creation of an environment that includes humor as one of its integral parts to attain better outcomes.
Finally, speaking about the positive effect of humor on the main actors of the healthcare sector, its critical significance for the improvement of relations between patients and care providers should be admitted. The use of appropriate jokes, funny situations, or stories helps to find common ground and engage in enhanced cooperation (Fang et al. 5). Because the bond between a client and a health worker is fundamental for final results, the ability to improve this aspect becomes extremely important for the whole sector. Trustful relations contribute to the minimization of the level of stress and mistakes rate during recovery. Additionally, the use of humor therapy in combination with the provision of pharmacological treatment can create the basis for better results if compared with traditional approaches.
Because of the outlined importance of laughter, there are several recommendations on how it can be integrated with the treatment process. First, special activities such as laughter yoga can become a possible option. It combines both physical and psychological impacts and helps workers to minimize anxiety, stress levels and remain in good shape (Fang et al. 5). Moreover, for managers, it is critical to cultivating a friendly and humorous atmosphere to ensure that specialists have an opportunity to shift their attention to less stressful situations and prevent the accumulation of stress. For patients, humor therapy can be used during their cooperation with health workers to avoid fears associated with their diseases (Fang et al. 5). Additionally, similar activities can be organized for them to reduce the negative impact of stressors mentioned above.
In such a way, humor remains one of the most potent tools that can be used in the modern healthcare sector to deal with high stress and anxiety levels. Its positive impact on the psychological states of both patients and employees is evidenced by multiple research papers that consider the creation of a positive atmosphere a key to better outcomes. There are also many recommendations for the establishment of the framework that will help to implement laughter therapy in current clinical settings.