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An illustrious past meets an exceptional future. We are committed to creating meaningful lives of purposeful engagement for every resident as well as those who serve them.

Westminster At Lake Ridge Blog

WLR Blog
Posted: Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Is Laughter the Best Medicine for Aging Well? Give It a Try

We’ve all heard the old expression that laughter is the best medicine. But have you ever wondered if it’s really true?

Depending on what ails you, it very well might be.

Aging well and laughter

For everyone wanting to age well, and who doesn’t, laughter may be the best discovery yet. Because not only can it help you stay healthy, but it also makes you feel good while you’re doing it.

Consider the following benefits:

Physical health benefits of laughter:

  • Boosts your immune system

  • Triggers the release of endorphins, promoting an overall sense of well-being

  • Prevents heart disease

  • Decreases pain

  • May help you live longer

  • And…it even burns calories

Mental health benefits of laughter:

  • Adds joy and happiness to life

  • Relieves tension and anxiety

  • Eases stress

  • Diffuses anger and helps place problems in perspective

  • Improves your mood

  • Strengthens resilience

And the advantages extend beyond just the individual. There are also social benefits. Laughter can help:

  • Strengthen our relationships

  • Attract others to us

  • Enhance teamwork

  • Help defuse conflict

  • Promote group bonding

How does laughter and aging well work together?

The benefits of laughter are good for everyone, no matter what your age. But if you look at some of the challenges we face as we grow older, it’s easy to see how useful this tool could be to lighten our moods and even give us a different perspective on life.

Having a good laugh with others is even more beneficial. We’ve all experienced how some of life’s frustrations seemed to just disappear when we put a funny spin on them and shared with a friend.

Laughter can go a long way in keeping us healthy. Boosting our immunity and helping to prevent heart disease are two effects that can make a big impact as we grow older. Finding the more positive side can increase our optimism and help us to face challenging days with a different outlook.

Tips for where to find laughter

If laughing hasn’t always come easy or if you could use a little help to get you started, try these suggestions:

1. Search when needed

Sometimes life doesn’t provide an easy glimpse of the funnier side. If you find yourself there, go in search of something to make you laugh. 

It could be watching a funny movie, listening to a favorite comedian or spending a few moments looking back on the amusing people or events in your life.

2. Make sure to smile

This is the preview of all laughter to come. So flex those smiling muscles. Take a look around for something that can make you smile or experience even a moment’s happiness. 

Make eye contact and smile at those you meet on the street, the grocery clerk and those along for the ride on the elevator. Remember, like laughter, smiling is contagious.

3. Make a list

Sometimes we get out of the habit of seeing the positive in life. As we grow older, we may become more focused on the changes that are bothering us or what may not be working as well as it once did. Making an actual list of the happy moments you’ve had may open your eyes to what has been there all the time.

4. Share your laughter with others

Nothing can attract a crowd like hearing great roars of laughter. You are automatically drawn to wonder what they are talking about, or what great news was just shared. 

The sight of people doubled over with joy can make observers feel better as well. So tell your funny stories or amusing anecdotes for others to enjoy.

5. Spend time with funny, buoyant people

It’s hard to feel light and happy if you are surrounded by gloom and frowns. Sometimes we don’t realize how directly our mood is impacted until we enjoy the day with an upbeat person. 

Make the effort to spend time with generally happy people. And make sure that others would include you on their list.

Finding laughter where you live

Laughter and enjoyment of life go hand in hand. And if you can create a daily environment that promotes both, you’re already aging well.

Independent living communities offer many benefits and they can actually help with a positive outlook as well. Not only will you find yourself surrounded by people with the same life experiences, but research has shown that residents often report feeling more optimistic and happier than those who remain in their homes.

Perhaps it’s also because the wisdom of age helps us let go of the annoyances and reach for all the joy that can be found. And when you live among happy people and have the amenities and activities to share together, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll find yourself having a good laugh too.

Ingleside’s Westminster at Lake Ridge Independent Living

At our Westminster at Lake Ridge Independent Living community, you’ll find yourself living among retirees who know how to get the most out of life. They’ve worked hard at fulfilling careers, raised wonderful children and enjoy their beautiful grandchildren – and they know how to laugh.

Seeing the bright side of life and appreciating all the freedom, special moments and fun is one of the keys to aging well and making the most out of what life has to offer. If it’s laughter you’d like to share, we hear it everyday. And you’ll know you’re in the right place when you make Westminster at Lake Ridge Independent Living your home. 

Take a look at what our vibrant community also has to offer:

  • Your choice of cottage or apartment home

  • Open one or two-bedroom floor plans that you can personalize to make your own

  • Maintenance-free lifestyle

  • Chef-prepared meals in our elegant dining room or casual café

  • Fully equipped fitness center

  • Heated indoor swimming pool

  • Woodworking shop

  • Two fishing ponds

  • Indoor greenhouse

  • Beautiful walking trails through our 62 wooded acres

If you would like more information about senior living, please download our complimentary Step-by-Step Guide for Making an Informed Decision, Choosing the Right Senior Living Community.

Please call (703) 420-7105 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a personalized tour today.

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