By Susan Shelly
Aging, as the saying goes, is not for sissies. From being unable to remember the name of a person you’ve just met, to knees that complain as you walk up the steps, to losing the car keys for the third time that day – sometimes it’s all you can do to not just sit down and cry.
Unless, according to Rita E. Miller, a certified psychiatric and mental health nurse, you learn how to laugh.
“We all need humor, especially as we get older,” said Miller, who recently spoke to a group of residents at Penn’s Crossing, a Spring Township apartment facility for individuals 62 years or older. “Humor is one of our very best ways to cope.”
Laughing not only makes you feel good, Miller said, it triggers healthy physical changes in your body, including strengthening the immune system, boosting energy levels, lessening pain and protecting you from damaging effects of stress. It also is good for improved kidney and brain function.