Laughter and Humor Therapy in Dialysis

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Abstract

Laughter and humor therapy have been used in health care to achieve physiological and psychological health-related benefits. The application of these therapies to the dialysis context remains unclear. This paper reviews the evidence related to laughter and humor therapy as a medical therapy relevant to the dialysis patient population. Studies from other groups such as children, the elderly, and persons with mental health, cancer, and other chronic conditions are included to inform potential applications of laughter therapy to the dialysis population. Therapeutic interventions could range from humorous videos, stories, laughter clowns through to raucous simulated laughter and Laughter Yoga. The effect of laughter and humor on depression, anxiety, pain, immunity, fatigue, sleep quality, respiratory function and blood glucose may have applications to the dialysis context and require further research.

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