August 8 – National Happiness Happens Day! (Can Happiness Help People Heal?)

August 8th – National Happiness Happens Day.

…which got me to thinking about the impact of happiness on healing.  As a clinician, I’ve anecdotally seen the correlation between a positive attitude and better injury recovery.  Conversely, those who do not believe they will heal well, or who are dealing with many life stressors, do not seem to as recover well or seem to experience more chronic pain.  So, on National Happiness Happens Day, I decided to perform a quick search to see if science supports the premise that happier people heal better.

Although I only performed a quick internet survey, the evidence appears to be overwhelming.  A positive attitude helps people cope better with stress and trauma, improves the immune system effect, and lowers pain levels.  On the other hand, stress releases hormones which impede immune system function.

So, today, on National Happiness Happens Day, take a few moments to celebrate the good in your life, listen to some happy music, spend extra time with a loved one, watch a YouTube clip of a late night TV comedian.  Seeking moments of happiness will now only create a positive impact on those around you, but will likely have a positive impact on your health.

Wishing you happiness and good health,

Marji

 

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