Endorphins – the happiness booster and pain reliever

Endorphins

It’s crucial to help children produce endorphins in their systems. They are developed naturally by the nervous system and often called “feel-good” chemicals because they can act as a happiness booster and pain reliever. They are natural analgesics and help us ‘power through pain’, which explains their association with the “fight or flight” response. They work by gathering in the space between neurons, preventing the pain impulse from traveling to the brain. They are most often associated with exercise and are also boosted through laughter and excitement.

Benefits

Endorphins (produced through exercise) develop a child’s fundamental movement skills, leads to improved motor skills (such as hand-eye co-ordination), better thinking and problem-solving, stronger attention skills and improved learning. Not surprisingly, these all combine to benefit school performance. Even the simple act of playing has a great part in this.

Other benefits:

  • Alleviates depression
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Boosting self esteem
  • Increases self-esteem and cognitive skills
  • Combats behavioural disorders.

Learning

In recent years, endorphin studies have focused on how this chemical contributes to learning. The release of endorphins is essential to brain development: when we feel good, we learn better. Intellectually stimulating the brain when endorphins have been released helps even more.

The mind-body connection is a powerful thing, and as parents and caregivers it’s crucial to work on stimulating the good feeling chemicals in the brains of our children.

Ways to boost endorphins naturally

  • Listening to, singing and making music
  • Free play
  • Sun exposure
  • Acts of kindness and compassion
  • Daily laughter.

Did you know children laugh on average about 300 times a day? For us adults in can be an average of just five! Nurture this as much as possible – the act of laughing is sometimes described as “inner jogging” and has lots of benefits. It can help reduce stress hormones, boost immune function by raising levels of infection-fighting cells, and produce a general sense of wellbeing.

If you’re interested in enrolling your child at Wild.Kind. Compassionate Playschool please contact us.

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