The holidays are a time for giving back and helping others via gifts of time, money, or physical presents. But did you know helping others is actually good for you as well? Research shows that the act of giving can boost your physical and mental health in numerous ways.
Mood enhancement Giving can stimulate your brain’s mesolimbic pathway, or reward center, while releasing endorphins — serotonin, which regulates your mood; dopamine, which gives you a sense of pleasure; and oxytocin, which creates a sense of connection with others. This can lead to a “helper’s high” that boosts self-esteem, elevates happiness and combats feelings of depression.
Lower blood pressure Generosity truly is good for your heart. Researchers found that giving to others can lower your blood pressure. Given that heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide, and that high blood pressure puts people at a higher risk of a heart attack, spending money on others will help you live longer.
A longer lifespan The secret to living longer may be giving more of yourself. Studies show that people who volunteer tend to live longer than those who don’t.
Less stress Want to melt away stress? The best solution may be to help someone else. Gift-giving or volunteering can reduce your levels of cortisol, the stress hormone that can make you feel overwhelmed or anxious.
While it can be difficult to find the time and resources to help others during the busy holiday season, by choosing Mercy Urgent Care for your urgent care needs you are already contributing to the greater good. It’s simple. By using the services of nonprofit Mercy Urgent Care you are part of a community of caring, and your support means that Mercy Urgent Care can continue to thrive and expand its work:
- providing affordable and high-quality healthcare services for the citizens of Western North Carolina;
- helping patients without the financial means to pay, with funding from the financial assistance program, Compassionate Care (the program covers more than half a million dollars in undercompensated care each year); and
- sending medical teams and supplies internationally to communities in need.