Laughter – It’s Contagious!

Did you know we are 30 times more likely to laugh if we are with others than if we are alone? Laughter is primarily a form of bonding. It’s an outward display that we understand each other. Scientists call laughter a spontaneous non-verbal vocal expression – like a scream or a sob. And it comes naturally. Even babies will laugh when they are tickled.

Observational studies indicate that most laughter actually stems from statements and comments, rather than jokes. Often, the person who has just spoken laughs the most frequently, suggesting laughter is not just a reaction to something someone else has said.

Another key use of laughter is to help cope with stressful situations. Couples who discuss an area of disagreement in their relationship with positive expressions like laughter, immediately become less stressed. The research suggests they are also happier in their relationships and stay together longer. However, this only works if both members of the couple are in on the same joke.

In short, laughter works… because in most instances, people laugh when they are with other people that they like.

To read more about laughter, check out this link from the BBC:

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