The effect of laughter therapy on sleep in community-dwelling elders with sleep disorders

Yim Sun Lee, Hyojung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of laughter therapy on the quality and quantity of sleep in elders with sleep disorders. Methods: This was a quasi-experimental study using a non-equivalent control group pretest-posttest design with 59 participants and included elders with sleep disorders, The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) scores of five or more points were: 29 in the experiment group and 30 in the control group. The experimental group participated in laughter therapy sixteen times, twice a week for 50 min per session for 8 weeks. Results: The results showed that laughter therapy was effective according to the PSQI (F=86.13, p<.001), total sleep time (F=9.34, p<.001), sleep efficiency (F=45.34, p<.001), sleep onset latency in the experimental group x2=13.77, p=.001, and in the control group x2=11.95, p=.003), number of awakenings (F=31.21, p<.001), light sleep (F=5.09, p=.008), deep sleep (F=15.13, p<.001), and serum melatonin levels (Z=-3.90, p<.001). but rapid eye movement sleep time did not differ significantly between the groups. Conclusion: The results of the study indicate that laughter therapy may be an effective nursing intervention to improve quantity and quality of sleep in community-dwelling elderly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-310
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Korean Academy of Fundamentals of Nursing
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • Aged
  • Laughter therapy
  • Melatonin
  • Sleep


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