A Laugh A Day Keeps The Stress Away

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Next time your teen is feeling overwhelmed, encourage them to take a YouTube break. No, seriously! A new study found that watching funny videos affects the brain in a positive way, similar to meditation.

Laughter produces the same brain waves as those created in a meditative state, according to the study conducted at Loma Linda University. Researchers from this California university looked at the brains of 31 college students as they watched funny, distressing, and calming videos. It was only the humorous videos that increased the brain's gamma waves.

Gammas waves are the highest frequency of brain waves and are often associated with cognition, information processing, attention, and memory. An increase in gamma waves is like a complete workout for the brain.

In other words, joyful laughing is a full-brain experience that allows the viewer to think more clearly and have more integrative thoughts afterwards. Laughter can make an individual feel more whole and focused, creating a sense of fulfillment and happiness.

Of course meditation is a great way to take a break and de-stress, but sometimes it's easier to get teens to sit in front of their computer than sit in silence for 20 minutes. If a teen watches a funny cat video for four minutes (just one!) before getting back to work on an essay, it can actually make a difference. Think of it as productive purrcrastination!

If you're looking for other ways to kick the procrastination habit, this TeenBeing blog post is filled with great ideas.

What's your go-to method for stress relief? What are your favorite SHORT AND funny videos to watch? Share in the comments!