Cartoons are Good Therapy
“A merry heart doeth good, like medicine.”
Studies show that laughter releases all kinds of healthy stuff in our bodies. According to an article written by Lynn Erdman, RN, MN, OCN for a 1994 issue of the Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, vol. 11, Issue 4, “Laughter eases the mind, defuses tension among people, and has positive physiologic effects on patients.”
According to Erdman, the benefits of laughter were known as far back as the Thirteenth-century when laughter was used as an anesthetic for surgical procedures. Five hundred years ago, laughter was used to treat colds and depression (Lee, 1990)
Perhaps, if we showed people more cartoons, they would need less health care.
Some people consider cartoons a great way to help children too. In their book 101 More Favorite Play Therapy Techniques, authors Heidi Gerard Kaduson and Charles E. Schaefer, Eds. write that, “Storytelling with the use of self-drawn cartoons is a venue that encourages children and adolescents to share what is going on in their lives and psyches without needing to rely just on verbal skills.”
The authors believe that cartoons provide therapists with insights about the way children structure their world. Sequential cartoons seem to provide the most opportunity for therapists to help their young clients.
There are numerous other examples of cartoons being used in health care. If you know of any, please share them.
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As a cartoonist and writer, I have a passion for the fine art of graphic humor. I believe it is an art form that does not get enough recognition. I hope to change that, if possible. Please let me know if you like these posts and my cartoons.