CAMLAW: Complementary and Alternative Medicine Law Blog

Laughter therapy at Cleveland Clinic

The Cleveland Clinic now offers laughter therapy. That's right, the bastion of mainstream clinical medicine is now adding laughter therapy to its repetoire of complementary and alternative medical therapies. Laughter really is good medicine, apparently. It's no laughing matter:
The Center for Integrative Medicine in Broadview Heights has laughter classes. Karen Fink, RN is a nurse and a Laughter Leader. She teaches class participants how to simulate laughing as a way to not only reduce stress, but also help a number of other health issues.

"Laughing aids in helping respiration, helping breathing, helping the cardiac system, blood flow, improving morale, it also helps your immune system." Karen says....

The class does look silly. Participants gather in a circle and do different movements while saying "Ho Ho Ho, Ha Ha Ha." But this type of laughter is not based on humor. It's based on the physiology of the act of laughing and what it does to the body. Even so, the class can't help but laugh at each other and once the giggles start they're contagious.
Why is laughter supposed to help with treatment? "Laughter releases endorphins which can aid in pain relief. It also reduces the stress hormone cortisol."

Patch Adams, MD was big on clown therapy as a way to bring a smile to patients' faces. Jokes and plain silliness meant a lot, as I read in his moving memoir suitably entitled, "gesundheit!" There's a reason practicing a smiling face is considered mentally rejeuvenating and therapeutic. Try a loud ha-ha for additional therapeutic value.
The Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen offers corporate legal services, litigation consultation, and expertise in health law with a unique focus on holistic, alternative, complementary, and integrative medical therapies. The law firm represents medical doctors, allied health professionals (from psychologists to nurses and dentists) and other clinicians (from chiropractors to naturopathic physicians, massage therapists, and acupuncturists), entrepreneurs, hospitals, and educational organizations, health care institutions, and individuals and corporations.

Michael H. Cohen is Principal in Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen and also President of a nonprofit organization exploring legal, regulatory, ethical, and health policy issues in the judicious integration of complementary and alternative medical therapies (such as acupuncture and traditional oriental medicine, chiropractic, naturopathic medicine, homeopathy, massage therapy, energy healing, and herbal medicine) and conventional clinical care. Michael H. Cohen is author of books on health care law, regulation, ethics and policy dealing with complementary, alternative and integrative medicine, including Healing at the Borderland of Medicine and Religion, Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Legal Boundaries and Regulatory Perspectives (1998), Beyond Complementary Medicine: Legal and Ethical Perspectives on Health Care and Human Evolution (2000), and Future Medicine: Ethical Dilemmas, Regulatory Challenges, and Therapeutic Pathways to Health Care and Healing in Human Transformation (2003).
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Health care and corporate lawyer Michael H. Cohen has been admitted to the Bar of California, Massachusetts, New York, and Washington D.C. In addition to qualifying as a U.S. attorney, he has been admitted and to the Bar of England and Wales as a Solicitor (non-practicing). For more information regarding the law practice of attorney Michael H. Cohen, see the FAQs for the Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen. Thank you for visiting the Complementary and Alternative Medicine Law Blog.
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