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FROM THE EDITOR'S PEN  / The Absolutely Best Medicine /  Editorial List

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The Absolutely Best Medicine

Researchers at the University of Maryland, School of Medicine in Baltimore have shown for the first time that laughter is linked to healthy function of blood vessels. Laughter appears to cause the tissue that forms the inner lining of blood vessels, the endothelium, to dilate or expand in order to increase blood flow.

When the same group of study volunteers was shown a movie that produced mental stress, their blood vessel lining developed a potentially unhealthy response called vasoconstriction, reducing blood flow. That finding confirms previous studies, which suggested there was a link between mental stress and the narrowing of blood vessels.

Well, there it is folks—proof positive that laughter is good medicine. Some say it may even be the best medicine. Yet, asking any group of family caregivers could have saved the good doctors the time and expense of the study.

We have been sharing the humor that we have heard on the road at the Fearless Caregiver Conferences, as well as the stories that you have emailed us for the past few years, and what better time than the exhaustive heat of early August to share some more?

At a recent Fearless Caregiver Conference, a family caregiver shared with her fellow attendees that a few days previous to the event, she visited her mother in the assisted living facility late one afternoon. She asked her mother what she had for lunch earlier that day. Her mom replied, “Dear, you know I have short-term memory disorder—ask me tomorrow.”


At our most recent event, when soliciting humorous stories from the attendees (go figure that there would be so many funny people living in Boca Raton, Florida), a lady told the tale of her husband’s visit to the neurologist. Her husband is living with dementia and during the visit, the doctor asked him to spell the word “world.” He looked the doctor directly in the eyes and responded, “W-o-r-l-d.” “Good,” replied the doctor. “Now, backwards.” Her husband promptly turned his back to the doctor and repeated, “W-o-r-l-d.”

You really can’t make this stuff up!

Please share your caregiver funnies with us.


Take care

Gary Barg

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