With fears growing about flu and other contagious diseases, I wonder if giving attention to good health could be equally catching? The old song lyrics, “When you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you,” make me think that the possibilities for protecting our immune system can go beyond a vaccine. This topic is explored by Bob Cummings in the Heritage newspapers in neighboring Michigan. It may be an antidote for the fear Wisconsin and national media stories spread. Read an excerpt here:
Is it reasonable to consider a good thing as contagious? Isn’t it widely accepted, for example, that laughter can be infectious?
What would be the beneficial implications of viewing health as catching?
For one thing, instead of viewing health as fragile, we could find a sturdier sense of health – that is, health that is not just the absence of disease or infirmity, as the World Health Organization’s definition of health points out.
This, in turn, could help us confront fear in the face of extensive news reports of the flu and other forms of contagion. Such reports, in this newspaper and others, can help us be informed, alert and wise. They can also make us fearful. Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the W.H.O., referring to the Ebola outbreak, said that fear is spreading faster than the virus.
Tackling fear is important.