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Date of Award

7-26-1999

Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychology

Committee Chair

Steven J. Cool, PhD

Second Advisor

Maryka Biaggio, PhD

Abstract

This paper presents a review of the literature on humor, laughter, and health. The discipline of psychoneuroimmunology will provide the context for a brief examination of how the immune, endocrine, and neural systems function interactively, and the literature on the relationship between humor associated mirthful laughter and immunocompetence will be presented. The literature to be presented will address the effectiveness of using humor associated mirthful laughter as a treatment intervention for individuals suffering from both physical and mental illnesses. Research studies have generated data that support the use of mirthful laughter as a treatment intervention, although further research is needed to substantiate all the claims made by researchers.

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